Posterior sternoclavicular joint dislocation, a rare but "dangerous" injury

Savas Deftereos, Georgios Drosos

PAMJ. 2021; 39:81. Published 27 May 2021 | doi:10.11604/pamj.2021.39.81.29240

A 17 years of age male patient presented with pain and movement restriction of right upper-extremity after a fall from his bicycle. On examination local swelling, tenderness, and depression of the medial end of the clavicle were present. Any attempt of shoulder movement was causing excruciating pain in this area. There was no other apparent injury and apart from the above-mentioned symptoms and clinical findings, all patients´ vital signs were normal. No prominent fracture or other pathology were noticed on X-rays. The clinical findings were compatible with an injury of the sternoclavicular joint; a posterior sternoclavicular joint (SCJ) dislocation in particular. Posterior dislocation of the SCJ can be associated with injuries of the structures that lie behind the manubrium resulting in life threatening complications such as neurovascular, tracheal and oesophageal injuries. Therefor prompt diagnosis and treatment is required. Based on the clinical findings, a computed tomography (CT) was performed and the clinical suspicion was confirmed (A,B). The dislocation was reduced under general anesthesia by closed means, followed by arm immobilization.
Corresponding author
Savas Deftereos, Radiology Department, Democritus University of Thrace, Alexandroupolis, Greece (

The Pan African Medical Journal (ISSN: 1937-8688) is a subsidiary of the Pan African Medical Journal. The contents of this journal is intended exclusively for professionals in the medical, paramedical and public health and other health sectors.

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