Acromioclavicular Joint Disorders

This is the name for the joint connecting the clavicle (collarbone) to the acromial edge of the scapula (shoulder blade). The two commonest problems to affect this joint are arthritic change and instability following injury.

Arthritic change gives rise to pain over the joint itself, which may be exacerbated by bringing the arm across the body, overhead activities or certain pushing and pulling movements.

The arthritic acromioclavicular joint (ACJ) can be treated by excising the worn surfaces through a traditional open acromioclavicular joint excision or via keyhole techniques performing an arthroscopic acromioclavicular joint resection.

Stability problems arising from the ACJ can occur after the joint has been dislocated. With severe injures, chronic problems with instability can arise, manifesting as pain and weakness of the shoulder (especially on overhead activites). This can be addressed surgically via an acromioclavicular joint stabilization. This is performed by restoring the alignment of the joint and securing it with an artificial ligament.

Acromioclavicular Joint Diagram