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MEDICINA DELLO SPORT

A Journal on Sports Medicine


Official Journal of the Italian Sports Medicine Federation
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Medicina dello Sport 2013 December;66(4):565-71

language: English, Italian

Distal clavicular osteolysis in competitive athletes

Dragoni S. 1, Rossi F. 2

1 Istituto di Medicina e Scienza dello Sport del CONI, Sezione di Radiologia,Roma, Italia;
2 Libero Docente Universitario di Radiologia e Medicina dello Sport


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Objective: The purpose of this study was to identify the presence of a condition of osteolysis of the distal clavicle in high level athletes, secondary to repetitive microtraumatic injuries.
Methods: The study consisted of a retrospective review of x-ray examinations of the shoulder performed over a period of 30 years (1980-2010). The standard radiographic view was improved in doubtful cases or when clinically indicated by the antero posterior view with the beam tilted 15° cephalad and MRI. None of the subjects reported the presence of previous acute trauma or suffered from rheumatic or systemic diseases that can cause the appearance of a similar pathological picture.
Results: Out of a total of 1170 examinations we found 23 cases of distal clavicle osteolysis (1.96%); the sports most frequently involved were weightlifting, judo and wrestling. None of them underwent surgical treatment.
Conclusion: The analysis of data derived from our sample confirms that the distal clavicle osteolysis is a rare occurrence but it must be kept in mind in the cases of increased pain and tenderness in the front of the shoulder at the acromioclavicular joint even in the absence of a major injury.

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