Anterior shoulder instability: a review of pathoanatomy, diagnosis and treatment

  • Guillaume D. Dumont
  • Robert D. Russell
  • William J. RobertsonEmail author
Modern Techniques in Shoulder Surgery (Lawrence V. Gulotta, Section Editor)


The glenohumeral joint is inherently predisposed to instability by its bony architecture. The incidence of traumatic shoulder instability is 1.7% in the general population. Associated injuries to the capsulolabral structures of the glenohumeral joint have been described and may play a role in predicting recurrent instability. Advanced imaging, computed tomography or MRI may be necessary to adequately evaluate for associated glenohumeral pathology. Treatment algorithms have traditionally included a period of non-operative management in all patients, however young athletic patients may often benefit from early operative treatment. Various open and arthroscopic surgical options exist to address anterior glenohumeral instability. Bony injuries including bony Bankart lesions and Hills Sachs lesion have been implicated in failed surgical management using techniques that address only the soft tissues. An individualized treatment approach, based upon the patient’s injury pattern and expectations, will likely lead to the most successful outcome.


Shoulder dislocation Glenohumeral instability Bankart lesion ALPSA HAGL Latarjet Labrum 



No conflicts of interest relevant to this article were reported.


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media, LLC 2011

Authors and Affiliations

  • Guillaume D. Dumont
    • 1
  • Robert D. Russell
    • 1
  • William J. Robertson
    • 1
    Email author
  1. 1.Department of Orthopaedic SurgeryUT Southwestern Medical Center, Sports Medicine & Shoulder ServiceDallasUSA

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