"Abstract

» Although shoulder instability is well described, there is a paucity of literature examining the differences between women and men with regard to epidemiology, pathophysiology, and treatment of shoulder instability.

» Variability in muscle mass, ligamentous laxity, and overall biomechanics of the glenohumeral joint may cause men and women to experience shoulder instability in different ways. » Additionally, differences in circulating hormones such as relaxin may contribute to increased joint laxity in women compared with men; these differences affect the pathophysiology of instability.

» The presence of increased physiologic laxity, due to these hormone levels, in female patients makes the treatment considerations more complex in that many classification systems do not take sex into consideration (i.e., the Instability Severity Index Score)."

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