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Arm Function After Arthroscopic Decompression of the Suprascapular Nerve at the Spinoglenoid Notch and Suprascapular Notch in Volleyball Players.

BACKGROUND: Suprascapular nerve (SSN) entrapment in volleyball players leads to infraspinatus (ISP) muscle atrophy and weakness of abduction and external rotation (ER) of the shoulder.

PURPOSE: To assess functional outcome after arthroscopic extended decompression of SSN in the spinoglenoid notch and suprascapular notch in a group of volleyball athletes.

STUDY DESIGN: Case series; Level of evidence, 4.

METHODS: Volleyballers who underwent arthroscopic SSN decompression were analyzed retrospectively. Assessment tools consisted of range of motion and ER strength on Lovett scale and postoperative ER strength measured by dynamometer, Constant-Murley score (CMS), and visual evaluation of ISP muscle recovery by assessing muscle bulk.

RESULTS: The study included 10 patients (9 male and 1 female). The mean age was 25.9 years (range, 19-33) and mean follow-up was 77.9 months (range, 7-123). The mean range of postoperative ER at 90° of abduction (ER2) was 105.6° (88°-126°) and 108.5° (93°-124°) for the contralateral side, while ER2 strength was 8 ± 2.6 and 12.65 ± 2.8 kg ( P < .01) respectively. Mean CMS was 89.9 (84-100). In 5 cases, there was complete recovery of ISP muscle atrophy whereas 2 patients had partial recovery and 3 had none.

CONCLUSION: Arthroscopic SSN decompression in volleyball players improves shoulder function, but results of ISP recovery and ER strength are variable.

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