Sternoclavicular Joint Reconstruction with Semitendinosus Allograft and Suture Anchors after Recurrent Posterior Dislocation in a Professional North American Football Player

Yung Han1, Elizabeth H. Cho1, *, Adriana Martinez2, Paul A. Martineau2
1 Los Angeles Shoulder Institute, Los Angeles, CA 90020, USA
2 Department of Orthopedic Surgery, McGill University, Montreal, Quebec, Canada

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© 2022 Han et al.

open-access license: This is an open access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International Public License (CC-BY 4.0), a copy of which is available at: This license permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original author and source are credited.

* Address correspondence to this author at the Los Angeles Shoulder Institute, 505 S. Virgil Ave. Ste. 205, Los Angeles, CA 90020, USA; Tel: 213-805-5822; E-mail:



Posterior sternoclavicular joint dislocations are an extremely rare but potentially life-threatening injury that can occur in sports. A variety of surgical procedures have been proposed, but there is no consensus on the treatment of choice. It is also largely unknown if a safe return to high-risk sports is possible.

Case Presentation:

We present a case of a posterior sternoclavicular joint dislocation in a 22-year-old male professional North American football player who had a recurrent irreducible posterior dislocation after initial injury management by closed reduction. The patient’s desire to return to football presented unique challenges to management. His sternoclavicular joint was subsequently reconstructed with semitendinosus allograft in a figure-of-eight augmented with suture anchors. After recovery, he returned to play as a running back in professional football symptom-free.


Our patient's successful return to playing professional football after the sternoclavicular joint reconstruction suggests that this should be considered an effective treatment option when managing posterior sternoclavicular dislocation in high level contact sports players.

Keywords: Posterior sternoclavicular dislocation, Sternoclavicular instability, Sternoclavicular reconstruction, Football, Sports injury, Recurrent sternoclavicular dislocation.