SCJ Conditions

Surgery for SCJ problems

SCJ - Conditions & Injuries

  • The sternoclavicular joint (SCJ) is a unique joint within the body. It is the only connection between the upper limb and the rest of the skeleton
  • Due to its central position & role,the small joint surfaces between the clavicle and the sternum transmit all of the load from the upper limb to the central skeleton
  • At the same time, the ligaments & tendons around the SCJ are constantly subjected to massive forces whilst keeping the joint stable
  • As a result the main type of problems that affect the SCJ are due to,
    • Wear & Tear -Osteoarthritis & Chronic Disk Tears
    • Instability - Dislocations & Acute Disk Tears

SCJ Osteoarthritis

  • Wear & Tear / Osteoarthritis changes are very common at the SCJ, but fortunately rarely usually cause any symptoms or problems
  • When symptoms do occur they can often be treated successfully by non-operative measures
  • When symptoms continue, despite adequate non-operative management, I have pioneered a minimally invasive (arthroscopic) surgical technique to successfully treat SCJ Osteoarthritis

SCJ Disk Tears

  • SCJ Disk Tears can occur either as the result of an injury (acute) or due to wear & tear (chronic)
  • Although SCJ Disk Tears are often asymptomatic, when they do cause problems they usually do not settle with non-operative management
  • I have pioneered a minimally invasive (arthroscopic) surgical technique to successfully treat SCJ Disk Tears

SCJ Instability

  • Instability of the SCJ, in the form of dislocations or subluxations (partial dislocation) are rare
  • Dislocations often occur as the result of a significant injury and, in the case of posterior dislocations, can be life threatening
  • Some dislocations can be treated non-operatively
  • When surgery is required it can be challenging, due to the location of the vital structures behind the chest wall
  • This is an area that, along with my Cardio-Thoracic Surgical colleagues, I specialize in