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Arch Orthop Trauma Surg. 2013 Oct;133(10):1431-40. doi: 10.1007/s00402-013-1804-8. Epub 2013 Jul 11.

Arthroscopically assisted stabilization of acute high-grade acromioclavicular joint separations in a coracoclavicular Double-TightRope technique: V-shaped versus parallel drill hole orientation.

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Center for Musculoskeletal Surgery (CMSC), Campus Virchow and Campus Mitte, Charité-Universitaetsmedizin Berlin, Augustenburger Platz 1, 13353, Berlin, Germany.



The arthroscopically assisted Double-TightRope technique has recently been reported to yield good to excellent clinical results in the treatment of acute, high-grade acromioclavicular dislocation. However, the orientation of the transclavicular-transcoracoidal drill holes remains a matter of debate.


A V-shaped drill hole orientation leads to better clinical and radiologic results and provides a higher vertical and horizontal stability compared to parallel drill hole placement.


This was a cohort study; level of evidence, 2b.


Two groups of patients with acute high-grade acromioclavicular joint instability (Rockwood type V) were included in this prospective, non-randomized cohort study. 15 patients (1 female/14 male) with a mean age of 37.7 (18-66) years were treated with a Double-TightRope technique using a V-shaped orientation of the drill holes (group 1). 13 patients (1 female/12 male) with a mean age of 40.9 (21-59) years were treated with a Double-TightRope technique with a parallel drill hole placement (group 2). After 2 years, the final evaluation consisted of a complete physical examination of both shoulders, evaluation of the Subjective Shoulder Value (SSV), Constant Score (CS), Taft Score (TF) and Acromioclavicular Joint Instability Score (ACJI) as well as a radiologic examination including bilateral anteroposterior stress views and bilateral Alexander views.


After a mean follow-up of 2 years, all patients were free of shoulder pain at rest and during daily activities. Range of motion did not differ significantly between both groups (p > 0.05). Patients in group 1 reached on average 92.4 points in the CS, 96.2 % in the SSV, 10.5 points in the TF and 75.9 points in the ACJI. Patients in group 2 scored 90.5 points in the CS, 93.9 % in the SSV, 10.5 points in the TF and 84.5 points in the ACJI (p > 0.05). Radiographically, the coracoclavicular distance was found to be 13.9 mm (group 1) and 13.4 mm (group 2) on the affected side and 9.3 mm (group 1) and 9.4 mm (group 2) on the contralateral side. The distance of neither the affected side nor the contralateral side differed significantly between both groups (p > 0.05). In group 1, eight patients (53 %) and in group 2 four patients (31 %) revealed signs of dynamic posterior instability (p > 0.05). Clavicular drill hole enlargement was found to be equally distributed in group 1, whereas group 2 displayed a cone-shaped form.


The Double-TightRope technique yields good to excellent clinical results in both V-shaped and parallel drill hole placement. Partial recurrent vertical and horizontal instability represents a problem in both techniques. So far, no significant differences regarding clinical or radiologic results have been found. Long-term results are needed to reveal possible advantages in terms of clinical and radiologic acromioclavicular stability.

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