Arthroscopic stabilization of acute initial anterior shoulder dislocation: the West Point experience.
Arthroscopic stabilization for acute initial shoulder dislocation has been the subject of thorough investigation at West Point over the past decade in an attempt to improve on the natural history of shoulder instability in our young athletic population. From January 1986 to December 1995, 127 patients were treated for acute initial shoulder dislocation at the United States Military Academy. Of the 55 patients treated nonoperatively, 47 (85%) have had recurrence of instability. Seventy-two patients were treated operatively during three separate phases in the evolution of arthroscopic management at our institution. The initial phase (1986 to 1988) of operative treatment included either arthroscopic abrasion or staple repair. The low recurrence rate (2 of 9) was promising. In the operative technique for the second phase (1988 to 1991) transglenoid sutures were used. Of the 21 patients treated in this manner, 18 (86%) had no recurrent instability at last follow-up (average, 32 months). In the third phase (1991 to 1993), patients were treated with a bioabsorbable tack and interscalene anesthesia, and in the sitting position. Thus far, 39 of the latest 42 cadetathletes with acute initial anterior shoulder dislocations have had stabilization with this bioabsorbable cannulated fixation device. The average age was 19.5 years (range, 17 to 23 years). Follow-up averaged 22 months. There were no perioperative complications. Of these 39 patients, 35 (90%) have a stable shoulder and have returned to preinjury performance status. One of 2 patients with recurrent subluxation and 1 of 2 patients with a traumatic redislocation required an open Bankart repair. In young athletes known to have high recurrence rates with nonoperative treatment, acute arthroscopic stabilization appears to be an effective minimally invasive treatment option that favorably alters the natural history of shoulder instability.
DeBerardino, TM; Arciero, RA; Taylor, DC
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