Journal of orthopaedic surgery and research 2017 07 2112(1) 118 doi 10.1186/s13018-017-0619-7
Partial-thickness rotator cuff tears (PTRCTs) are one of the leading causes of shoulder dysfunction. Successful results have been reported with different treatment techniques, but the long-term consequences of these procedures are not yet clearly known. The purposes of this study were to evaluate and compare the mid- and long-term clinical outcomes of arthroscopically repaired bursal-side PTRCTs after conversion to full-thickness tears and identify the possible effects of age, gender, and hand dominance on clinical outcomes.
Twenty-nine patients who had undergone arthroscopic repair of a significant bursal-side PTRCT were functionally evaluated. The repair was made after conversion to a full-thickness tear. The average patient age was 55.2 years (range 35-69 years, SD ±7.6 years). Clinical outcomes were evaluated at 2 and 5 years after surgery. Constant Shoulder Score (CSS) and Visual Analogue Scale for Pain (VAS pain) were used as outcome measures.
The average CSS improved from 38.9 preoperatively to 89.2 and 87.8 at 2 and 5 years after surgery, respectively (p < 0.001). The average VAS pain score decreased from 7.90 preoperatively to 1.17 and 1.31 at 2 and 5 years after surgery, respectively (p < 0.001). A significant improvement was detected in patient functional outcomes and VAS pain scores at 2 and 5 years after surgery compared with the preoperative period. The patients who underwent surgery from their non-dominant extremity showed a significantly higher CSS increase relative to those who underwent surgery on the dominant extremity (p = 0.022). CONCLUSIONS
Arthroscopic repair of high-grade bursal-side PTRCTs after conversion to full-thickness tears is a reliable surgical technique with good functional outcomes and pain relief both at mid- and long-term follow-ups. Surgery on the non-dominant side may be related to better functional outcomes.