Department of Diagnostic and Interventional Imaging, McGovern Medical School, The University of Texas Health Science Center at Houston, 6431 Fannin Street, 2.130B, Houston, TX 77030, USA. Electronic address: [Email]
Shoulder girdle trauma is one of the most common injuries encountered in emergency centers. These injuries can be easily overlooked due to the complex osteology of the shoulder. Although radiographs are usually sufficient for assessing traumatic shoulder injuries, cross-sectional imaging is sometimes indicated to assess portions of the shoulder not well visualized by radiographs. In this article, the authors review the spectrum of shoulder girdle injuries: sternoclavicular dislocations, clavicle fractures, acromioclavicular separations, shoulder dislocations, scapula fractures, and scapulothoracic dissociation. They also discuss the presentation, imaging evaluation, and classification of these injuries with emphasis on pitfalls in imaging diagnosis and indications for computed tomography/magnetic resonance.