Prospective evaluation of the effect of rotator cuff integrity on the outcome of open rotator cuff repairs.


BACKGROUND Open rotator cuff repairs have led to excellent clinical results; however, several studies have linked postoperative structural integrity to patient outcomes. The purpose of this study is to prospectively assess postoperative cuff integrity after open rotator cuff repair and assess its relationship to clinical outcome. HYPOTHESIS Preoperative rotator cuff tear size and postoperative rotator cuff integrity are important factors in overall clinical outcomes. STUDY DESIGN Prospective nonrandomized clinical outcomes study. METHODS Forty-seven consecutive patients undergoing repair of full-thickness rotator cuff tears by a single surgeon were enrolled in this prospective study. A standardized evaluation was performed preoperatively and postoperatively at annual intervals. All patients underwent postoperative magnetic resonance imaging at least 1 year after surgery. Statistical evaluation was performed using paired and unpaired 2-tailed t tests for comparison. RESULTS Thirty-two patients were available for evaluation. Overall, the patients experienced a significant (P < .05) improvement in their American Shoulder and Elbow Surgeons survey (40-85) and Constant (53-80) scores. The overall retear rate was 31%. Although patients with large tears preoperatively and retears postoperatively had lower overall outcomes scores, this was not significant. CONCLUSION These data support open rotator cuff repair as an effective technique that restores excellent shoulder function. The authors did not find postoperative cuff integrity to have a significant effect on outcomes when compared with those with an intact cuff. In fact, those with a retear still had a significant improvement in all clinical areas assessed, including strength.

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@article{Klepps2004ProspectiveEO, title={Prospective evaluation of the effect of rotator cuff integrity on the outcome of open rotator cuff repairs.}, author={Steven J Klepps and Julie Y. Bishop and Jason Lin and Oren Cahlon and Alyssa Strauss and Patrick R L Hayes and Evan L. Flatow}, journal={The American journal of sports medicine}, year={2004}, volume={32 7}, pages={1716-22} }