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Am J Orthop (Belle Mead NJ). 2014 May;43(5):220-6.

Associations among shoulder strength, glenohumeral joint motion, and clinical outcome after rotator cuff repair.

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Bone and Joint Center, Henry Ford Hospital, Detroit, MI.


Rotator cuff tears are a common condition causing pain and disability, but the relationships among clinical measures of shoulder function and measures of glenohumeral joint (GHJ) function are not well known. In the study reported here, dynamic in vivo GHJ motion was measured during abduction from biplane radiographs in 22 rotator cuff repair (RCR) patients and 36 control subjects. Isometric shoulder strength was measured and clinical outcomes were assessed using the Western Ontario Rotator Cuff (WORC) Index. Associations among WORC, GHJ motion, and several shoulder strength ratios were assessed with linear regression. An association was detected between higher ER/ABD (external rotation/coronal-plane abduction) strength ratio and a humerus positioned more inferiorly relative to the glenoid in control subjects and RCR patients. Higher ER/ABD strength ratio was also associated with better clinical outcome in RCR patients. These findings suggest a relationship between ER/ABD strength ratio and a more centrally located average superior/inferior contact center in RCR patients and control subjects. The ER/ABD strength ratio can be easily measured in a clinical setting and therefore can be used in larger studies to investigate its relation to clinical outcomes over time or perhaps to predict superior migration of the humeral head.

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