Anteroinferior Glenoid Rim Fractures Are a Relatively Common Finding in Shoulder Instability Patients Aged 50 Years or Older but May Not Portend a Worse Prognosis

Bryant M. Song, Anne A. Smartt, Ryan R. Wilbur, Aaron J. Krych, Kelechi R. Okoroha, Jonathan D. Barlow, Christopher L. Camp

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Purpose: To investigate the incidence of anteroinferior glenoid rim fractures (AGRFs) after anterior shoulder instability (ASI) in patients aged 50 years or older, identify risk factors for surgical intervention for AGRFs, compare initial treatment strategies, and compare clinical outcomes of patients with and without associated AGRFs. Methods: An established geographic medical record system was used to identify patients aged 50 years or older with ASI between 1994 and 2016. Patients with radiographic evidence of AGRFs were identified and matched 1:1 to patients without AGRFs. Outcome measures included recurrent instability, recurrent pain events, conversion to arthroplasty, and osteoarthritis graded with the Samilson-Prieto classification for post-instability arthritis. Results: Overall, 177 patients were identified, with a mean follow-up period of 10.8 years. Of these patients, 41 (23.2%) had AGRFs and were matched to 41 control patients without AGRFs. The average age was 58.6 and 58.2 years for the AGRF and control groups, respectively. Rates of surgical intervention (27% vs 49%), recurrent instability (12% vs 20%), progression of osteoarthritis (34% vs 39%), and conversion to arthroplasty (2% vs 5%) were similar between AGRF patients and controls. For patients with AGRFs, increased bone fragment size (odds ratio, 1.1) and increased body mass index (odds ratio, 1.2) correlated with an increased risk of surgery. The cutoff value for an increased risk of surgery in patients with AGRFs was a fragment size 33% of the glenoid width or greater. Conclusions: Of patients aged 50 years or older at presentation of ASI, 23.2% presented with an associated AGRF. A fragment size 33% of the glenoid width or greater and a higher patient body mass index were significant factors for surgical intervention; however, most patients did not require surgery and still showed acceptable clinical outcomes, and the most common reason for surgical intervention was a rotator cuff tear. Overall, the presence of an AGRF did not portend a worse prognosis as treatment strategies and long-term outcomes including recurrent instability, progression of osteoarthritis, and conversion to arthroplasty were similar to those in patients without AGRFs. Level of Evidence: Level III, retrospective comparative study.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)e1813-e1819
JournalArthroscopy, Sports Medicine, and Rehabilitation
Issue number5
StatePublished - Oct 2022

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Orthopedics and Sports Medicine
  • Physical Therapy, Sports Therapy and Rehabilitation
  • Rehabilitation
  • Public Health, Environmental and Occupational Health


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