Knee Surgery, Sports Traumatology, Arthroscopy

, Volume 24, Issue 2, pp 365–373 | Cite as

Biomechanical effects of anterior capsular plication and rotator interval closure in simulated anterior shoulder instability

  • Jeffrey F. Sodl
  • Michelle H. McGarry
  • Sean T. Campbell
  • James E. Tibone
  • Thay Q. LeeEmail author



The purpose of this study was to determine the effect of a stepwise arthroscopic anterior plication and arthroscopic-equivalent rotator interval (RI) closure on glenohumeral range of motion, kinematics, and translation in the setting of anterior instability.


Six cadaveric shoulders were stretched to 10 % beyond maximum external rotation (ER) to create an anterior shoulder instability model. Range of motion, kinematics, and glenohumeral translations were recorded for the following conditions: (1) intact, (2) stretched, (3) after anterior capsular plication, and (4) after RI closure.


The total range of motion after capsular stretching increased significantly in the 60° abduction position (p = 0.037). Average ER and total rotation were significantly decreased from the intact and stretched conditions by both repair conditions at 60° and 0° of glenohumeral abduction (p < 0.05), with no significant difference between plication and additional RI closure. At 0° abduction and 0° ER, glenohumeral translation decreased significantly from the stretched condition after RI closure with 10 and 15 N anterior and 10 N posterior loads (p < 0.05). At 30° ER, translation after RI closure was significantly less than both the intact and stretched conditions with 10 N anterior loads (p = 0.009; p = 0.004). These changes in translational stability were not seen with plication alone.


Anterior capsular plication reduced glenohumeral range of motion back to the intact state, and often tighter. RI closure did not contribute significantly to the reduction in the range of motion, but had implications regarding glenohumeral translation. Caution should be taken when performing anterior plication and combined repairs to avoid overtightening. Intraoperative translations could be useful when debating RI closure in patients with unidirectional anterior glenohumeral instability.


Anterior instability Capsule plication Rotator interval Range of motion Translation: cadaver study Shoulder 



VA Rehabilitation Research and Development Merit Review.


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg (outside the USA) 2014

Authors and Affiliations

  • Jeffrey F. Sodl
    • 1
    • 2
  • Michelle H. McGarry
    • 1
  • Sean T. Campbell
    • 1
  • James E. Tibone
    • 2
  • Thay Q. Lee
    • 1
    • 3
    • 4
    Email author
  1. 1.Orthopaedic Biomechanics LaboratoryVA Long Beach Healthcare System (09/151)Long BeachUSA
  2. 2.Department of Orthopedic Surgery and Sports MedicineUniversity of Southern CaliforniaLos AngelesUSA
  3. 3.Department of Orthopaedic SurgeryUniversity of California, IrvineIrvineUSA
  4. 4.Department of Biomedical EngineeringUniversity of California, IrvineIrvineUSA

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