Dimensional analysis of the bicipital groove and its associated pathology in a South African population
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Abstract: The bicipital groove (BG) forms an indentation between the greater and lesser humeral tubercles and lodges the long head of biceps brachii tendon (LHBBT) along with the ascending branch of the circumflex humeral artery. This study aimed to determine the dimensions (length, width, depth) of the BG in a select South African population. The dimensions of the BG in one hundred and sixty (n=160; Right: 80; Left: 80, Male: 100; Female: 60) unpaired dry bone humerii were measured with a digital caliper (Linear Tools 2012, 0-150mm, LIN 86500963) and was analyzed using SPSS (V25). Results: Bicipital groove dimensions: (a) Length (mm): Right 66.64±9.06, Left 68.31±11.52; Male 67.44±9.12, Female 67.53±12.25; (b) Width (mm): Right 8.98±1.49, Left 9.27±1.30; Male 9.18±1.45, Female 9.05±1.31; (c) Depth (mm): Right 7.73±1.31, Left 7.20±1.18; Male 7.43±1.29, Female 7.53±1.24. The mean BG length observed in this study disagreed with previous studies where smaller lengths were reported. In addition, the comparison of the mean BG depth in this study also revealed a statistically significant difference which may suggest that increased depth in the BG is a common finding in right side of BG specimens. This finding was unique as BG depth is associated with biceps tendon pathology and augments South African shoulder-related literature. Since biceps tendon pathology is associated with decreased biceps activity and pain, investigation of the BG may provide useful data to evaluate individuals with potential abnormality of the bicep tendon. It may also be used as a landmark for humeral head replacement in the treatment of proximal humerus fractures.