Barry J O'Neill1, David O'Briain1, Kieran M Hirpara1, Michelle Shaughnesy2, Elizabeth A Yeatman2, T Kenneth Kaar1
1 Department of Trauma and Orthopaedics, Merlin Park Hospital, Galway, Ireland
2 Department of Physiotherapy, Merlin Park Hospital, Galway, Ireland
Purpose: Maintenance of a pain-free functional range of motion is the aim of surgery for shoulder trauma. The aim of this study was to show that the range of motion can be accurately assessed using digital photographs.
Materials and Methods: We reviewed 17 patients who had undergone surgery for shoulder trauma. Each patient's range of motion was assessed by two physicians and two physiotherapists. Digital photographs were taken of each patient at their functional limit. Photographs were assessed by two physicians and two physiotherapists, and by an external physician who had no previous contact with the patients.
Results: Inter-observer and intra-observer reliability trials showed excellent correlation of results. There was no significant difference between observer's results, or between results of physical examination and photographic examination.
Conclusions: Digital photography is a viable adjunct to assessment of range of motion of the shoulder. This has positive implications both clinically, and for shoulder research.
Level of Evidence: Level 3.
Barry J O'Neill
Department of Trauma and Orthopaedics, Merlin Park Hospital, Galway
Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None
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