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This article has been peer reviewed. It is the authors' final version prior to publication in Arthroscopy The Journal of Arthroscopic and related Surgery Volume 25, Issue 8, November 2008, Pages 891-896. The published version is available at DOI: 10.1016/j.arthro.2008.10.003. Copyright © Elsevier Inc..


Since the introduction of the beach chair position for shoulder arthroscopy, orthopaedic surgeons have debated whether the beach chair or lateral decubitus is superior. Most surgeons use the same patient position to perform all of their arthroscopic shoulder procedures, regardless of the pathology. Each position has its advantages and disadvantages. The evidence regarding the efficiency, efficacy, and risks of the lateral decubitus and the beach chair positions for shoulder arthroscopy does not show one position to be superior. This review presents a comparison of these positions with regard to setup, surgical visualization, access, and patient risk.

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