JOURNAL ARTICLE

Functional outcome and health-related quality of life after surgical repair of full-thickness rotator cuff tear using a mini-open technique

Deniz Baysal, Robert Balyk, David Otto, Charlene Luciak-Corea, Lauren Beaupre
American Journal of Sports Medicine 2005, 33 (9): 1346-55
16002486

BACKGROUND: Rotator cuff tear, a common shoulder injury, can lead to shoulder pain and functional loss.

HYPOTHESIS: Surgical repair of full-thickness rotator cuff tears using the mini-open surgical technique will improve shoulder function and health-related quality of life.

STUDY DESIGN: Cohort study. Level of evidence, 2.

METHODS: Patients with a full-thickness rotator cuff tear who underwent a mini-open repair were evaluated for (1) active shoulder range of motion preoperatively, and 6 months and 12 months postoperatively and (2) health-related quality of life preoperatively, 6 months postoperatively, and annually up to 5 years postoperatively. Satisfaction with the repair and return to work status were ascertained 1 year postoperatively. A subgroup analysis of tear size and patient age was also undertaken.

RESULTS: Of the subjects, 61 (73%) were men, and the average age was 53.2 ( +/- 9.9) years. According to repeated-measures analysis of variance, shoulder range of motion (flexion and external rotation) improved significantly from before surgery to 1 year after surgery (P <.001). The mean American Shoulder and Elbow Surgeons scores improved from 53.3 ( +/- 20.6) preoperatively to 90.6 ( +/- 11.7) 1 year postoperatively (P <.001). The mean Western Ontario Rotator Cuff scores also improved from 43.2 ( +/- 20.2) preoperatively to 87.2 ( +/- 14.3) 1 year postoperatively (P <.001). No differences were seen in either the American Shoulder and Elbow Surgeons scores or Western Ontario Rotator Cuff scores between the 1-year examination and the last follow-up assessment undertaken at a median of 5 years postoperatively (P >.05). Ninety-six percent of patients were satisfied or very satisfied with the results of their repair; 78% of patients who were working before surgery returned to work without modification by 1 year postoperatively. For the most part, patient age and size of tear did not influence postoperative range of motion or health-related quality of life.

CONCLUSION: Mini-open rotator cuff repair led to improved shoulder function and health-related quality of life up to 5 years postoperatively.

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