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Efficacy of the Rotational Traction Method in the Assessment of Glenohumeral Cartilage Surface Area in Computed Tomography Arthrography

Polat, Gökhan, MD*; Oğul, Hayri, MD*; Yalçin, Ahmet, MD; Tuncer, Kutsi, MD; Kaya, Serhat, MD*; Pirimoğlu, Berhan, MD*; Sade, Recep, MD*; Kantarci, Mecit, MD, PhD*

Journal of Computer Assisted Tomography: March/April 2019 - Volume 43 - Issue 2 - p 345–349
doi: 10.1097/RCT.0000000000000809
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Objective We aimed to investigate the efficacy of the rotational traction method in expanding the joint space and enabling the assessment of an extended surface area.

Methods Sixty patients who underwent computed tomography arthrography were evaluated in the study: 30 with and 30 without the help of rotational traction. The subgroups consisted of patients with adhesive capsulitis, habitual luxation, or labral tears. Areas of obscured joint surface by coalescent cartilages were calculated using computer software, and those belonging to the traction and nontraction groups along with subgroups were compared statistically.

Results There was a significant difference between the traction and nontraction group regarding the contact surface area (P < 0.001 for both observers). In patients with adhesive capsulitis, the contact surface area was larger compared with the other subgroups (P = 0.002 for observer 1 and P = 0.002 for observer 2). In patients with habitual luxation, the contact surface area was smaller compared with the other subgroups (P = 0.002 for observer 1 and P = 0.001 for observer 2).

Conclusions Expansion of joint distance is important for assessing the joint cartilage. The rotational traction method provides effective separation of the joint space. For this reason, rotational traction can be used effectively in patients in whom the joint cartilage is to be evaluated.

From the *Department of Radiology, Medical Faculty, Ataturk University, Erzurum;

Department of Radiology, Medical Faculty, Erzincan University, Erzincan; and

Department of Orthopedics and Traumatology, Medical Faculty, Ataturk University, Erzurum, Turkey.

Received for publication May 16, 2018; accepted August 20, 2018.

Correspondence to: Gökhan Polat, MD, Department of Radiology, Faculty of Medicine Ataturk University, Yakutiye, 25040 Erzurum, Turkey (e-mail:

The authors declare no conflict of interest.

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