Buford complex

Last revised by Dr Henry Knipe on 21 Jul 2022

Buford complex is a congenital glenoid labrum variant where the anterosuperior labrum is absent in the 1-3 o'clock position and the middle glenohumeral ligament is thickened (cord-like). It originates directly from the superior labrum adjacent to the bicipital labral complex and inserts onto the articular surface of the subscapularis tendon.  

A Buford complex is present in ~3% (range 1.5-5%) of individuals 2,6

The Buford complex was first described by Don Buford Jr (fl. 2018) an American orthopedic surgeon in 1994 4.

A Buford complex should not be mistaken for a superior labral tear or sublabral foramen ref.

Buford complex results in unusual strains to the superior labrum and biceps muscle predisposes to a SLAP lesion 6.

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Cases and figures

  • Case 1
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  • Case 2
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  • Case 3: absent anterosuperior labrum and thickened MGHL
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  • Case 4: shoulder athrogram
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  • Case 5
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  • Case 6
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