Return to Sports After Arthroscopic Anterior Stabilization in Patients Aged Younger Than 25 Years


      To prospectively evaluate the return-to-sports rates after arthroscopic anterior stabilization in patients aged younger than 25 years.


      Fifty-eight patients underwent arthroscopic capsulolabral repair for isolated anterior instability. The mean age at the time of surgery was 19.5 years (range, 12 to 24 years). At a mean follow-up of 27 months (range, 20 to 32 months), 53 patients (42 male and 11 female patients) were assessed with American Shoulder and Elbow Surgeons, L'Insalata, and visual analog scale scores, as well as physical examination. The rate of return to sports and risk factors for postoperative recurrence were evaluated.


      The overall rate of return to sports at final follow-up was 87%. Forty patients returned to a preinjury level of sports activity after surgery. Six patients returned to less competitive activities. Seven patients who had a subsequent traumatic event resulting in dislocation or subluxation did not return to sports activities. Open revision repairs were performed in 5 patients with recurrent instability. The American Shoulder and Elbow Surgeons and L'Insalata scores improved from 66.9 to 83.2 and from 60.4 to 79.2, respectively (P < .001). The visual analog scale score improved from 3.1 to 1 (P < .001). No significant loss of external rotation was noted postoperatively (mean, 79°). Mattress repair was associated with a higher return-to-sports rate (P < .05). Multiple instability episodes (>5) and the presence of a Hill-Sachs lesion were associated with postoperative failure (P < .05).


      Arthroscopic stabilization is a feasible surgical option in the young, athletic population. Mattress labral repair was associated with a higher rate of return to sports, whereas patients who had ligamentous laxity, multiple instability episodes (>5), and Hill-Sachs lesions had the greatest risk of recurrence. These factors should be given consideration in planning the appropriate treatment for anterior instability in this age group.

      Level of Evidence

      Level IV, therapeutic case series.
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