What is SLAP Lesion?

January 8, 2021 || By : Dr. MhmadFarooq || Sports Medicine

What is SLAP Lesion?

  • SLAP Lesion is the abbreviation of Superior Labrum from Anterior to Posterior tears.
  • It may occur as isolated lesion or be associated with:
    1. internal impingement
    2. rotator cuff tears (usually articular sided)
    3. instability (may be subtle)
  • Most common in a Throwing Athlete (repetitive overhead activities).

SLAP lesion Classification (Expanded Snyder classification)

IBiceps fraying, intact anchor on superior labrumArthroscopic debridement
IIDetachment of biceps anchorRepair versus tenotomy/
IIIBucket-handle superior labral tear; biceps intactArthroscopic debridement
IVBucket-handle tear of
superior labrum into
– <30% of tendon involvement: debridement
– > 30%: repair or debridement and/or tenodesis of tendon
VLabral tear + SLAP lesionStabilization of both
VISuperior flap tearDebridement
VIICapsular injury + SLAP lesionRepair and stabilization
Expanded Snyder classification

Type II is the most common (IIA is anterior, IIB is posterior, IIC is anterior and posterior).

Physical Examination:

  1. O’Brien Test
  2. Compression-rotation test
  3. Speed test
  4. Dynamic labral shear test
  5. Kibler anterior slide test
  6. Crank test
  7. Kim biceps load test


  • MR arthrography is the modality of choice.
  • A paralabral cyst is indicative of a SLAP tear (or posterior labral tear).
    • Cyst may extend to spinoglenoid notch and compress the suprascapular nerve, leading to infraspinatus wasting.
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