Background: The primary objective was to assess whether a patient's early postoperative quality of life (QOL) correlates with the retear rate following single-tendon double-row rotator cuff repair. Methods: We performed a secondary analysis of a randomized clinical trial of 58 patients who underwent single-tendon arthroscopic rotator cuff repair of full-thickness tears performed by a single surgeon. Patients were randomized to an early- or delayed-motion protocol. At 6 months, all patients underwent magnetic resonance imaging to assess whether the rotator cuffs were intact or retorn. QOL was assessed preoperatively and at 3 weeks, 6 weeks, 12 weeks, 6 months, and 12 months postoperatively using the Western Ontario Rotator Cuff (WORC) index. Results: After 6 months of rehabilitation, 41 patients (71%) had intact rotator cuff repairs whereas 17 (29%) had full-thickness tears. Patients with torn rotator cuffs at 6 months postoperatively had significantly lower WORC scores at 6 weeks postoperatively (P =.041). Patients with greater improvements in QOL perioperatively (preoperative WORC score minus 6-week postoperative WORC score > 264.5) were more likely to have full-thickness tears by 6 months postoperatively. Compliant patients assigned to the delayed-motion protocol had a failure rate of 11% (2 of 19) compared with 38% (15 of 39) in the noncompliant and early-motion protocol patients (P <.01). Overall, patients who were noncompliant with the shoulder immobilizer were 8.2 times more likely to have a failed repair on magnetic resonance imaging (P =.01). Conclusions: Patients with better QOL shortly after arthroscopic rotator cuff repair were more likely to have retears by 6 months.
Bibliographical noteFunding Information:
Augustus D. Mazzocca is a consultant for Arthrex and receives research grants from Arthrex.
© 2019 Journal of Shoulder and Elbow Surgery Board of Trustees
- Level III
- Retrospective Cohort Comparison
- Rotator cuff
- Treatment Study
- Western Ontario Rotator Cuff (WORC) index
- quality of life (QOL)