Rotator cuff repair with all-suture anchors: a midterm magnetic resonance imaging evaluation of repair integrity and cyst formation

Hans Van der Bracht, Tom Van den Langenbergh, Marc Pouillon, Skrallan Verhasselt, Philippe Verniers, Danny Stoffelen
Journal of Shoulder and Elbow Surgery 2018, 27 (11): 2006-2012

BACKGROUND: This study investigated the feasibility and safety of all-suture anchors in arthroscopic rotator cuff repair.

METHODS: All patients were diagnosed with a rotator cuff tear by ultrasound or magnetic resonance imaging (MRI). Patients with partial tears, massive tears, subscapularis tears, or previous shoulder surgery, were excluded. MRI and clinical outcome were investigated in all patients at 1.58 years (range, 1.0-2.0 years) after rotator cuff repair with all-suture anchors (prospective case series). Integrity of the cuff repair, cyst formation (encapsulated fluid signal around the anchor), ingrowth of the bone into the anchor, and integrity of the bone tunnel border were evaluated for 47 anchors. Clinical results were evaluated using the Constant-Murley score.

RESULTS: An MRI evaluation was performed in 20 patients at 1.58 years (range, 1.0-2.0 years) after rotator cuff repair with all-suture anchors. MRI evaluation showed a very small rim of fluid around 10% of the anchors. None of the anchors showed cyst formation with fluid diameter more than twice the anchor diameter. In approximately 90% of the anchors, no fluid could be detected between the anchors and the edge of the bony tunnel. Full rotator cuff integrity was seen in 19 patients. Only 1 patient sustained a retear. Clinical results comparable with an arthroscopic rotator cuff repair using classic anchors were seen.

CONCLUSIONS: This prospective clinical cohort study shows promising early radiographic and clinical results after arthroscopic rotator cuff repair using all-suture anchors.

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