Background: The radiographic appearance of osteochondritis dissecans (OCD) of the humeral capitellum varies according to the stage of the lesion. It is important to evaluate the stage of OCD lesion carefully to guide treatment. We compared the interobserver reliability of currently used classification systems for OCD of the humeral capitellum to identify the most reliable classification system. Methods: Thirty-two musculoskeletal radiologists and orthopaedic surgeons specialized in elbow surgery from several countries evaluated anteroposterior and lateral radiographs and corresponding computed tomography (CT) scans of 22 patients to classify the stage of OCD of the humeral capitellum according to the classification systems developed by (1) Minami, (2) Berndt and Harty, (3) Ferkel and Sgaglione, and (4) Anderson on a Web-based study platform including a Digital Imaging and Communications in Medicine viewer. Magnetic resonance imaging was not evaluated as part of this study. We measured agreement among observers using the Siegel and Castellan multirater κ. Results: All OCD classification systems, except for Berndt and Harty, which had poor agreement among observers (κ = 0.20), had fair interobserver agreement: κ was 0.27 for the Minami, 0.23 for Anderson, and 0.22 for Ferkel and Sgaglione classifications. The Minami Classification was significantly more reliable than the other classifications (P < .001). Conclusions: The Minami Classification was the most reliable for classifying different stages of OCD of the humeral capitellum. However, it is unclear whether radiographic evidence of OCD of the humeral capitellum, as categorized by the Minami Classification, guides treatment in clinical practice as a result of this fair agreement.

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Journal of Shoulder and Elbow Surgery
Department of Orthopaedics

Claessen, F. M. A. P., van den Ende, K. I. M., Doornberg, J. N., Guitton, T. G., Eygendaal, D., van den Bekerom, M., … Paladini, P. (2015). Osteochondritis dissecans of the humeral capitellum: Reliability of four classification systems using radiographs and computed tomography. Journal of Shoulder and Elbow Surgery, 24(10), 1613–1618. doi:10.1016/j.jse.2015.03.029