What is a SLAP tear?

A SLAP tear is a term given to a tear of the superior labrum (Superior Labrum Anterior to Posterior) in the shoulder.

The labrum is a fibrous structure that encircles the glenoid and helps stabilise the glenohumeral joint. Importantly, the superior part of the labrum is attached to the biceps tendon (Figure 1).

SLAP tears often occur with episodes of instability, significant falls, traction injuries and repetitive lifting activities such as lifting heavy overhead weights. This pathology in also seen in