Latarjet Open Stabilisation

 by Mr Ben Gooding

Why perform a Latarjet stabilisation?


An acromioclavicular joint dislocation (or ACJ separation) occurs where the clavicle (collar bone) meets the acromion (shoulder blade). This should not be confused with shoulder dislocation which occurs when the humerus separates from the glenohumeral joint (the ball and socket joint).

The Acromioclavicular joint is located at the distal end of the clavicle and attaches to the acromion of the scapula. Although this is part of the shoulder, a dislocation and a separation are completely different. Acromioclavicular separation occurs as a result of a downward force being applied to the superior aspect of the acromion, either by something striking the top of the acromion or by falling directly onto it. The injury is more likely to occur if the shoulder is struck with the hand outstretched. The resultant trauma to the shoulder has a direct effect on the ligaments holding the two bones (scapula and the clavicle) together. This injury does not always involve bone fractures; however if the impact to the shoulder is severe, fractures may occur.


Separated shoulders often occur in people who participate in sports. This shoulder separation is classified into 6 types, with 1 through 3 increasing in severity, and 4 through 6 being the most severe. The most common mechanism of injury is a fall on the tip of the shoulder or a fall on an outstretched hand.

This X-ray shows the end of the clavicle dislocated upwards away from the acromion above the shoulder.

Diagnosis is based on physical examination and an x-rays of the affected shoulder, with treatment of the separated shoulder dependant on the severity of the injury. Should it be determined that surgery is required, your doctor will discuss the best course of intervention available and establish your suitability for surgery.