American Orthopaedic Society for Sports Medicine Annual Meeting

American Orthopaedic Society for Sports Medicine Annual Meeting

July 16, 2015
1 min read

Higher odds of return to play without recurrent instability seen with arthroscopic repair

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ORLANDO, Fla. — Intercollegiate contact-sports athletes who experienced in-season shoulder instability and underwent arthroscopic stabilization had significantly higher odds of returning to sport the following season without a recurrent instability event compared with athletes who received nonoperative treatment, according findings of an award-winning study presented here.

Athletes with in-season shoulder instability treated with arthroscopic stabilization in the off-season were “five-times more likely to be able to complete the subsequent season without any recurrent instability events,” study co-author Brett D. Owens, MD, said during his presentation at the American Orthopaedic Society for Sports Medicine Annual Meeting. The research won the Fellows Research Award for Clinical Science at the meeting.

In their prospective multicenter study, Owens and his colleagues followed 39 NCAA-eligible intercollegiate athletes with in-season anterior shoulder instability who underwent either arthroscopic stabilization or nonoperative treatment at the discretion of the players and their surgeons. The investigators evaluated return to play and recurrent instability in the competitive season following the initial instability event.

“Fifteen of the athletes or 38% had experienced subluxation events. Twenty-four [or] 62% experienced complete locked dislocation events” Owens said. Ten athletes were treated nonoperatively, and 29 athletes underwent surgical repair.

Investigators found a recurrence rate of 3% for the arthroscopic stabilization group vs. 60% for the nonoperative group.

 “When we looked at those with single vs. multiple instability events during the index season, we found no difference statistically is successful return to play,” Owens said. “The type of instability and number of events did not reach significance based upon our analysis. The long-term consequences associated with each stability event still remains unclear.” – by Monica Jaramillo


Owens, BD et al. Paper #23. Presented at: American Orthopaedic Society for Sports Medicine Annual Meeting; July 7-12, 2015; Orlando, Fla.

Disclosure: Owens reports he is a paid consultant for Mitek and Musculoskeletal Transplant Foundation.