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Labrum Tear (SLAP tear, superior glenoid labrum tear)

SLAP tear/ Superior Glenoid Labrum Tear

The Labrum

The labrum is a soft tissue rim that surrounds the socket portion of the joint (glenoid) in the shoulder to help stabilize the joint. It also serves as an attachment site for several ligaments.

Labral tear

The symptoms of a tear in the shoulder socket rim are very similar to those of other shoulder injuries. Symptoms include:

  • Pain, typically when reaching or performing overhead motion
  • Mechanical Symptoms such as catching, locking, popping, or grinding
  • Pain at night or pain with daily activities
  • Feelings of instability in the shoulder (i.e.: like the shoulder is going to “pop out”
  • Limited range of motion
  • Weakness



SLAP stands for “Superior Labrum Anterior to Posterior.” This means that the upper rim of the labrum has been torn from front to back. The tear occurs where the biceps tendon anchors to the labrum. A Bankart lesion is when there is a tear at the lower part of the labrum.


Injuries to the labrum could be as a result of falling on an outstretched hand, forceful lifting or repeated overhead motions (such as throwing).


The most fearsome injury in pitchers.


There are several options to treat this problem. Discover some basic information regarding this condition:

SLAP tears  (en Español)

Bankart Lesion  (en Español)


For more specific information, please check with your provider.

Make an appointment here to discuss your specific problem further.


Source and for more information: American Academy of Orthopaedic Surgeons (AAOS)