Outcomes Following Combined Posterior Labral and SLAP Repair in Military Patients Younger Than 35 Years

Clare K. Green*, John P. Scanaliato, Alexis B. Sandler, Hunter Czajkowski, Benjamin R. Childs, Walter A. Fink, John C. Dunn, Nata Parnes

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

1 Scopus citations


Background: Members of the military are known to experience disproportionately high rates of both glenohumeral instability and superior labrum anterior-posterior (SLAP) tears when compared with civilian populations. Although the outcomes after simultaneous repair of Bankart and SLAP lesions have been well described, there is a paucity of literature available regarding the operative management of posterior instability with concomitant superior labral pathology. Purpose: To compare outcomes of combined arthroscopic posterior labral and SLAP repair with those of isolated posterior labral repair. Study Design: Cohort study; Level of evidence, 3. Methods: All consecutive patients younger than 35 years who underwent arthroscopic posterior labral repair from January 2011 to December 2016 with a minimum follow-up of 5 years were identified. From this cohort of eligible patients, all individuals who had undergone combined SLAP and posterior labral repair (SLAP cohort) versus posterior labral repair alone (instability cohort) were then identified. Outcome measures including the visual analog scale score, Single Assessment Numeric Evaluation (SANE), American Shoulder and Elbow Surgeons (ASES) score, Rowe instability score, and range of motion were collected pre- and postoperatively and scores were compared between groups. Results: In total, 83 patients met the inclusion criteria for the study. All patients were active-duty military at the time of surgery. The mean follow-up was 93.79 ± 18.06 months in the instability group and 91.24 ± 18.02 months in the SLAP group (P =.5228). Preoperative SANE and ASES scores were significantly worse in the SLAP group. Both groups experienced statistically significant improvements in outcome scores postoperatively (P <.0001 for all), and there were no significant differences in any outcome scores or range of motion between groups. In total, 39 patients in the instability cohort and 37 in the SLAP cohort returned to preinjury levels of work (92.86% vs 90.24%, respectively; P =.7126), and 38 instability patients and 35 SLAP patients returned to preinjury levels of sporting activity (90.48% vs 85.37%, respectively; P =.5195). Two patients in the instability group and 4 patients in the SLAP group were medically discharged from the military (4.76% vs 9.76%; P =.4326), and 2 patients in each cohort had experienced treatment failure at the final follow-up (4.76% vs 4.88%; P >.9999). Conclusion: Combined posterior labral and SLAP repair led to statistically and clinically significant increases in outcome scores and high rates of return to active-duty military service that did not differ significantly from the results after isolated posterior labral repair. The results of this study indicate that simultaneous repair is a viable treatment option for the management of combined lesions in active-duty military patients <35 years of age.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)2635-2641
Number of pages7
JournalAmerican Journal of Sports Medicine
Issue number10
StatePublished - Aug 2023
Externally publishedYes


  • SLAP repair
  • arthroscopy
  • military
  • posterior labral tear
  • shoulder instability


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