Posterior sternoclavicular dislocation: a case report

J Emerg Med. Nov-Dec 1994;12(6):783-7. doi: 10.1016/0736-4679(94)90484-7.


Posterior sternoclavicular dislocation is a relatively rare form of trauma, but one that must be recognized by the emergency physician. Such a case is presented here. Due to the proximity of the clavicle to critical thoracic outlet structures, serious complications can arise from a posterior dislocation: impingement on and possible trauma to the trachea, pneumothorax, laceration of underlying great vessels, brachial plexus injury, esophageal trauma, and laryngeal trauma that may cause permanent vocal cord changes. Many of these potential complications are life-threatening, and it is important that this injury not be triaged in the emergency department as a minor injury, thereby leading to its improper or delayed treatment.

Publication types

  • Case Reports

MeSH terms

  • Adolescent
  • Football / injuries
  • Humans
  • Joint Dislocations* / complications
  • Joint Dislocations* / diagnosis
  • Joint Dislocations* / therapy
  • Male
  • Manipulation, Orthopedic
  • Sternoclavicular Joint / injuries*