What Are The Functional Implications of Clavicular Lengthening Surgery for Wider Shoulders?

Q: Dr. Eppley, I am a 26 years old male and I am interested in undergoing the clavicle lengthening procedure for aesthetic purposes. Do you perform this? In this regard I have a couple of questions. What would be the orthopedic implications of such a surgery? Would I loose shoulder mobility? I am asking this as I am quite into sports and I do practice bodybuilding and rugby. Moreover, I have a condition to my right shoulder. A couple of years ago I broke my AC joint ligament. How would this interfere with the surgery? Would it still be effective? What would be an approximate cost of the operation?

I really look forward to hearing from you. Thank you for your time.

A: Thank you for your inquiry. Clavicular lengthening for increased shoulder width is a procedure that I perform. It is a mid-clavicular osteotomy with interpositional graft so it does not involve the AC joint which is at the lateral end of the clavicular bone. As a result it does not affect shoulder mobility since this primarily relates to the AC joint. It does require a sufficient healing time, much like that of a clavicular fracture, and since it involves both sides it would take three months before one can fully return to strenuous sporting activities.

Dr. Barry Eppley
Indianapolis, Indiana