Arthroscopy of the sternoclavicular joint: an anatomic evaluation of structures at risk
Pathologies of the sternoclavicular joint (SCJ) are infrequently reported in the medical literature. Nevertheless, the SCJ is subject to the same disease processes that occur in other joints, including degenerative arthritis, rheumatoid arthritis, infection and trauma. Most of these conditions present with swelling of the joint, which may be associated with pain and/or tenderness.
The SCJ joint is a point of articulation between the upper extremity and the axial skeleton. It is classified as a double arthrodial synovial joint, and is reported to have little intrinsic stability. The joint is formed by the sternal end of the clavicle, the clavicular notch of the manubrium and the cartilage of the first rib. The joint has an articular disc that interposes between the sternal end of the clavicle and the clavicular notch of the sternum. Ligamentous structures in this region include the anterior and posterior sternoclavicular ligaments, costoclavicular ligament, and interclavicular ligament.
If conservative treatment fails, operative treatment is often proposed as in other joints. This study shows that the SIJ can be accessed arthroscopically. The procedure nevertheless carries a high risk of damaging a vital neurovascular structure if the posterior capsule is violated with an instrument > From: Van Tongel et al., Surg Radiol Anat 36 (2014) 375–381. All rights reserved to Springer-Verlag France.
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