Prognostic Factors for Successful Recovery After Arthroscopic Rotator Cuff Repair: A Systematic Literature Review

A.J.M. Fermont*, N. Wolterbeek, R.N. Wessel, J.P. Baeyens, R.A. de Bie

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review


STUDY DESIGN: Systematic literature review. OBJECTIVES: To perform a systematic review of the literature on prognostic factors for successful recovery after arthroscopic rotator cuff repair. BACKGROUND: Rotator cuff lesion is a common shoulder disorder, with a prevalence ranging from 13% in people over 50 years of age to more than 50% in people over 80 years of age. Several factors can affect the extent to which a person will recover after the surgical repair of a rotator cuff tear. More knowledge about these prognostic factors may lead to a better understanding of why the recovery process is successful in some patients but not in others. METHODS: A systematic literature search from 1995 to November 2013 was performed to identify studies reporting prognostic factors for successful recovery after arthroscopic rotator cuff repair. RESULTS: A total of 455 studies were initially identified, 10 of which were included in the review. For all included studies, the percentage of patients with complete tendon healing at final assessment ranged from 60% to 88%. Twelve prognostic factors, which could be divided into 4 categories, were identified as being associated with better recovery: demographic factors (younger age, male gender), clinical factors (higher bone mineral density, absence of diabetes mellitus, higher level of sports activity, greater preoperative range of motion, absence of obesity), factors related to cuff integrity (smaller sagittal size of the cuff lesion, less retraction of the cuff, less fatty infiltration, no multiple tendon involvement), and factors related to the surgical procedure (no concomitant biceps or acromioclavicular joint procedures). CONCLUSION: Knowledge and understanding of prognostic factors should be used in the decision-making process concerning arthroscopic rotator cuff repair to offer better care to patients.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)153-163
JournalJournal of Orthopaedic & Sports Physical Therapy
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - 1 Jan 2014

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