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Articular Capsule of Acromioclavicular Joint
Connective Tissue

Articular Capsule of Acromioclavicular Joint

Capsula articularis articulationis acromioclavicularis

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Anatomical Relations

The articular capsule of the acromioclavicular joint completely surrounds the articular margins of the acromion of the scapula and the clavicle. The capsule is weak, and is strengthened by the acromioclavicular ligament superiorly, and to a lesser extent, inferiorly. Additionally, its fibers are intermingled with that of the aponeuroses of the trapezius and deltoid muscles for added strength.

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Structure

The articular capsule of the acromioclavicular joint is a sac-like structure that enclosed the acromioclavicular joint. It is composed of two layers. The external layer, the fibrous membrane, is composed of dense fibrous tissue. The internal layer, the synovial membrane, lines the joint cavity and is composed of loose connective tissue.

Function

The articular capsule of the acromioclavicular joint ensures that the joint is sealed, thus, keeping the lubricating synovial fluid within the joint. It provides passive stability to the joint by limiting the joint movement. Additionally, it provides active stability by containing numerous proprioceptive nerve endings which relay mechanical information back to the central nervous system (Ralphs and Benjamin, 1994).

References

Ralphs, J. R. and Benjamin, M. (1994) 'The joint capsule: structure, composition, ageing and disease', Journal of Anatomy, 184(Pt 3), pp. 503-509.

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