SLAP Lesions (Shoulder Labral Tears)
A SLAP lesion, which stands for superior labrum, anterior and posterior, is a common condition that affects athletes. Overhead athletes are at an increased risk due to repetitive strain on this structure with throwing, but the tissue can be injured from a fall onto the arm, a hit or tackle, as well as a shoulder dislocation.
Because of the shoulders inherent instability, the labrum serves to add depth to the socket to increase stability and serves as an anchor point for the biceps tendon and some of the ligaments in the shoulder.
People with this type of injury generally report a vague shoulder pain that cannot be pinpointed. There may also be a sensation of clicking and popping as well as a general feeling of instability. Chronic dislocations can also be a side effect of this condition due to the labrums inability to provide the support necessary with movement.