Innovative use of computer-assisted tomography in the management of an irreducible anterior shoulder dislocation

Int J Shoulder Surg. 2011 Jul;5(3):77-80. doi: 10.4103/0973-6042.86245.


Anterior dislocation of the shoulder is a common injury which is often reduced in the emergency department, without specialist orthopedic input. We report a case of an irreducible locked anterior glenohumeral dislocation with impaction of the humeral head onto the antero-inferior glenoid rim and subsequent generation of a Hill-Sachs lesion. To our knowledge, we describe the first reported case of using computer-assisted tomography to generate a sequence of movements to safely disimpact the locked dislocation without causing further iatrogenic injury or a fracture through the humeral articular surface. This novel image-assisted closed reduction technique spared the patient from the morbidity associated with performing open reduction surgery. At 6-month follow-up, the patient reported no re-dislocations, returned to work and had excellent range of motion.

Keywords: Anterior; Hill–Sachs; computer tomography; impacted; irreducible; shoulder dislocation.

Publication types

  • Case Reports