January 14, 2014
1 min read

Rotator cuff re-tears found more prevalent after single-row arthroscopic repairs

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In a recent study, patients with rotator cuff tears were more likely to have re-tears following an arthroscopic single-row repair compared to a double-row repair.

"Single-row repairs resulted in significantly higher re-tear rates compared with double-row repairs, especially with regard to partial-thickness re-tears,” Peter J. Millett, MD, MSc, and colleagues reported in the study.

From their literature search, Millett's group identified seven studies that involved level 1 randomized controlled trials in which single-row and double-row rotator cuff repairs were investigated. For the meta-analysis, they sought to compare the statistics for both types of repairs in terms of clinical outcomes and imaging-diagnosed re-tears. Millett and colleagues included studies that used the American Shoulder and Elbow Surgeons, UCLA and Constant clinical scores.

The study results showed an overall re-tear rate for double-row rotator cuff repair of 14.2% and a re-tear rate of 25.9% in the single-row group. The investigators also found a statistically significant increase in the risk of imaging-diagnosed re-tears in the single-row group vs. the double-row group, with partial thickness re-tears accounting for the majority of imaging-diagnosed re-tears across the studies.

Any improvement in clinical outcome scores for the single-row and double-row groups, however, was not statistically significantly different, based on the study abstract.


Millett PJ. J Shoulder Elbow Surg. 2014;doi: http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.jse.2013.10.006

Disclosure: The authors have no relevant financial disclosures.