Glenohumeral joint

Dr Jeremy Jones et al.

The glenohumeral joint is a synovial joint that exists between the head of the humerus and the glenoid


The glenohumeral joint is a ball and socket articulation between the glenoid fossa of the scapula and the head of the humerus

Due to the relatively small contact area between the two joint surfaces, it is the most mobile joint in the body. The glenoid labrum adds depth to what would otherwise be a relatively shallow socket - the glenoid fossa.


The number of muscles involved in movement around the shoulder is vast and a large proportion of them act at the glenohumeral joint. See: movements of the arm

Special structures
Joint capsule

Joint capsule extends from the margin of the glenoid fossa and extends to the anatomical neck of the humerus, incorporating the insertion of the long head of biceps brachii tendon. It is reinforced by the rotator cuff, except inferiorly, where it is at its weakest 2


There are many bursae associated with the shoulder but two in particular have clinical significance 1:

Upper limb anatomy
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Article Information

rID: 24606
Section: Anatomy
Synonyms or Alternate Spellings:

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