J Sports Med 2001 Nov-Dec;29(6):762-70
Greater tuberosity notch: an important indicator of articular-side partial rotator cuff tears in the shoulders of throwing athletes.
Nakagawa S, Yoneda M, Hayashida K, Wakitani S, Okamura K.
of Sports Medicine, Osaka Kosei-nenkin Hospital, Japan.
We examined the
location of rotator cuff tears, associated labral injuries, and notches on the
greater tuberosity of the humeral head in shoulders of throwing athletes.
Arthroscopic findings (rotator cuff tear, labral condition, and greater
tuberosity notch) as well as other factors (duration of playing baseball,
range of motion, and joint laxity) of 61 baseball players were retrospectively
studied. The presence of a greater tuberosity notch was also evaluated for by
plain radiographs. Forty patients had articular-side partial rotator cuff
tears, most of which occurred in the interval between the supraspinatus and
infraspinatus tendons. The existence of a rotator cuff tear was not related to
the range of motion, joint laxity, the detachment of the superior glenoid
labrum, or posterosuperior labral injury. Greater tuberosity notches were
recognized in 38 shoulders by arthroscopy and most were detected on plain
radiographs. The presence of a notch was significantly related to the
existence of a rotator cuff tear, while the size of the notch was
significantly related to the depth and width of the tear. The greater
tuberosity notch seems to be one of the most important diagnostic indicators
for a rotator cuff tear in throwing athletes.