Success of shoulder surgery depends on implant fixation to the glenoid trabecular bone. The purpose of this study was to evaluate the anatomic characteristics of the normal glenoid trabecular bone microarchitecture to help assist in implant design and provide data for finite element analyses. Eight cadavers without evidence of osteoarthritis were used. Glenoids were scanned with micro-computed tomography and then divided into lateral and medial, then superior, inferior, anterior, and posterior quadrants (8 total segments). Each segment was analyzed for total mineral density, bone volume fraction, structure model index, and trabecular thickness (Tb.Th), number (Tb.N), and separation. Bone volume fraction was significantly higher (P<.05) in the posterolateral (20.8%±4.5%) and posteromedial (18.6%±2.5%) regions. Both Tb.N and Tb.Th were also highest in the posterolateral (Tb.N, 1.74±0.374 mm; Tb.Th, 0.148±0.017 mm) and posteromedial (Tb.N, 1.49±0.401 mm; Tb.Th, 0.165±0.016 mm) regions. Trabecular separation was greatest in the superomedial segment (1.00±0.181 mm) and lowest in the posterolateral region (0.663±0.121 mm). For structural model index, both the posterolateral (0.314) and posteromedial (0.312) regions had lower values than the other regions. The posterior segment of the normal glenoid in both the lateral and medial regions has the highest density, which is attributed to the increased trabecular number and thickness with decreased separation. This increased density may be attributed to the posterior directed loading of the glenohumeral joint. The trabecular microarchitecture in the glenoid is plate-like, as indicated by the low structural model index.
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