Background: Physeal injuries of the coracoid process are rare but may be increasing because of increased participation of youth in year-round sports. Purpose: To analyze reported physeal and apophyseal injuries of the coracoid process. Study Design: Systematic review; Level of evidence, 4. Methods: PubMed and Scopus were searched using the terms scapula fracture and coracoid fracture. The inclusion criteria were English full-text articles describing coracoid fracture as well as articles that described patient characteristics and presented appropriate images. The exclusion criteria were descriptive cases without images as well as those lacking appropriate images. Citation tracking was conducted to find additional articles and full-text articles written in other languages. Articles were included if they reported physeal injury or judged to involve physeal injury based on the provided images. Results: Overall, 22 studies including 32 patients (29 males, 3 females) were identified. All but 2 patients were younger than 18 years of age, and 66% (21/32) had sustained injuries during or as a result of participation in sporting activities. The affected site was the physis at the base in 18 patients, an intra-articular fracture in the primary coracoid ossification center combined with the subcoracoid ossification center to form an intra-articular fracture in 5, the apophysis of the tip in 3, the apophysis of the angle in 5, and uncertain in 1. Eleven patients had concurrent acromioclavicular injuries. The injury was acute in 23 patients, chronic in 6, and traumatic nonunion in 3. Among 21 cases in which treatment methods and outcomes were described, 21% of the acute cases (4/19), and 2 of the 3 nonunions were surgically treated. Only 1 study used a widely accepted evaluation method. Follow-up periods ranged from 6 weeks to 2 years. Outcomes were generally excellent for nonoperative and operative treatment and without any serious complications. Conclusion: Coracoid physeal injuries occurred most commonly in patients aged 13 to 15 years of age (71%) and were usually sustained during or as a result of sports activities (66%). The most common injury site was the physis at its base. The cause of these injuries is probably severe or repeated traction of the attached muscles and ligaments. The majority of these injuries can be successfully treated nonoperatively.
- physeal injury
- sports trauma
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Orthopedics and Sports Medicine