Several trauma-related injuries and degenerative conditions affect the distal end of the clavicle. Fractures of the distal clavicle and separations of the acromioclavicular (AC) joint are common, resulting from direct impact onto the shoulder region. Osteolysis and osteoarthritis of degenerative processes of the AC joint are caused by repetitive activity and overuse of the shoulder. To help identify options for treating the distal end of the clavicle, this review highlighted notable anatomical locations and biomechanics; findings of physical examinations; classification systems of injuries; and standard operative and nonoperative methods used for treatment. Although distal clavicle fractures, AC joint separations, osteolysis, and AC joint osteoarthritis can be treated nonoperatively, severe injuries may be successfully treated using operative techniques.

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