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Effect of the Supraspinatus and Coracohumeral Ligament on Humeral Motion and Tendon Strain

Buce, Justin Gabriel (2023) Effect of the Supraspinatus and Coracohumeral Ligament on Humeral Motion and Tendon Strain. Master's Thesis, University of Pittsburgh. (Unpublished)

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The supraspinatus (SS) is a rotator cuff (RC) muscle primarily responsible for initiating abduction and stabilizing the glenohumeral joint. It is a bipennate tendon, meaning it can be split into an anterior cord and posterior strap. Anterior to the SS is the coracohumeral ligament (CHL) which is also responsible for stabilizing the shoulder. A biomechanical cadaveric study was performed to determine the effects of these structures on humeral head translation, tendon strain, and tear gap width. It was hypothesized that simulated tears of these structures would cause humeral head migration, and that tendon strain would increase or decrease according to the loading patterns.
Twenty cadaveric specimens were loaded with physiological loads in a shoulder simulator and tested at 0° and 30° of shoulder abduction. All twenty specimens underwent five different loading cases with the loads of the SS cord and SS strap varied. Following the loading cases, the specimens were evenly divided into a CHL and SS cord first cut groups where the tendon was physically released. Humeral head translation and tendon strain in the SS was measured for the loading cases, and the same measurements were made with the cutting cases in addition to tear gap width size.
The humeral head did not significantly translate within the glenoid for all loading and cutting cases, and translations were less than 2 mm. Tendon strain changed according to the loading cases, but strain in the tendon did not significantly increase or decrease when compared to each other. The tear gap width became significantly large once the entire SS was released.
Although patterns were seen in humeral head translation and tendon strain, there were no significant changes. This does not support the claim that the SS stabilizes the glenohumeral joint and that tendon strain would significantly change according to tendon load. While the results imply that these structures can be treated conservatively clinically unless the entire SS is torn, more work is needed to determine the full biomechanical responsibilities of the SS and CHL.


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Item Type: University of Pittsburgh ETD
Status: Unpublished
CreatorsEmailPitt UsernameORCID
Buce, Justin Gabrieljgb35@pitt.edujgb350000000251132412
ETD Committee:
TitleMemberEmail AddressPitt UsernameORCID
Thesis AdvisorSmolinski, Patrickpatsmol@pitt.edupatsmol
Committee CoChairMiller, Mark Cmcmllr@pitt.edumcmllr
Committee MemberLin, Jeen-Shangjslin@pitt.edujslin
Date: 13 June 2023
Date Type: Publication
Defense Date: 7 April 2023
Approval Date: 13 June 2023
Submission Date: 5 April 2023
Access Restriction: No restriction; Release the ETD for access worldwide immediately.
Number of Pages: 69
Institution: University of Pittsburgh
Schools and Programs: Swanson School of Engineering > Mechanical Engineering
Degree: MS - Master of Science
Thesis Type: Master's Thesis
Refereed: Yes
Uncontrolled Keywords: Biomechanics
Date Deposited: 13 Jun 2023 12:58
Last Modified: 13 Jun 2023 12:58


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