Luxatio erecta humeri. A case report

Jon Davids, R. D. Talbott

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

48 Scopus citations


Luxatio erecta humeri is a rare type of glenohumeral dislocation. The pathomechanics of this injury involve either direct axial loading on a fully abducted extremity or leverage of the humeral head across the acromion by a hyperabduction force. The clinical presentation of this type of shoulder dislocation is unique, with the affected extremity held rigidly above the head in abduction. Reduction is accomplished by a form of traction-countertraction under intravenous sedation and analgesia. A variety of neurologic and vascular injuries may be associated with luxatio erecta humeri, involving the brachial plexus and axillary artery, respectively. Concomitant fracture of the acromion, clavicle, coracoid, greater rosity, and humeral head may also be seen. A computed tomography scan of the case reviewed here revealed a large humeral head defect oriented perpendicular to the classic Hill-Sachs lesion. Luxatio erecta humeri is associated with significant late morbidity, including recurrent dislocation, instability, and adhesive capsulitis.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)144-149
Number of pages6
JournalClinical Orthopaedics and Related Research
Issue number252
StatePublished - 1990
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Orthopedics and Sports Medicine
  • Surgery


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