Scapular Dyskinesis: From Basic Science to Ultimate Treatment

Int J Environ Res Public Health. 2020 Apr 24;17(8):2974. doi: 10.3390/ijerph17082974.


Background: This study intends to summarize the causes, clinical examination, and treatments of scapular dyskinesis (SD) and to briefly investigate whether alteration can be managed by a precision rehabilitation protocol planned on the basis of features derived from clinical tests. Methods: We performed a comprehensive search of PubMed, Cochrane, CINAHL and EMBASE databases using various combinations of the keywords "Rotator cuff", "Scapula", "Scapular Dyskinesis", "Shoulder", "Biomechanics" and "Arthroscopy". Results: SD incidence is growing in patients with shoulder pathologies, even if it is not a specific injury or directly related to a particular injury. SD can be caused by multiple factors or can be the trigger of shoulder-degenerative pathologies. In both cases, SD results in a protracted scapula with the arm at rest or in motion. Conclusions: A clinical evaluation of altered shoulder kinematics is still complicated. Limitations in observing scapular motion are mainly related to the anatomical position and function of the scapula itself and the absence of a tool for quantitative SD clinical assessment. High-quality clinical trials are needed to establish whether there is a possible correlation between SD patterns and the specific findings of shoulder pathologies with altered scapular kinematics.

Keywords: arthroscopy; biomechanics; rotator cuff; scapula; scapular dyskinesis; shoulder.

Publication types

  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Biomechanical Phenomena
  • Dyskinesias*
  • Humans
  • Range of Motion, Articular
  • Scapula* / physiopathology
  • Shoulder
  • Shoulder Joint* / physiopathology