Platelet-rich plasma in fibrin matrix to augment rotator cuff repair: a prospective, single-blinded, randomized study with 2-year follow-up

Michael R. Walsh, Bradley J. Nelson, Jonathan P. Braman, Bret Yonke, Michael Obermeier, Avais Raja, Megan Reams

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

6 Scopus citations


Background: Application of autologous platelet-rich plasma in fibrin matrix (PRPFM) improves tendon healing in patients undergoing arthroscopic rotator cuff repair. We performed a prospective, randomized, single-blinded study of 76 patients, with an α level of 5% and power of 80%. Materials and methods: Seventy-six patients were divided into 2 randomized groups. The treatment group underwent arthroscopic rotator cuff repair with PRPFM. The control group did not receive the PRPFM treatment. Patients were evaluated preoperatively and at 6 months and 24 months postoperatively with validated clinical outcome scores, and dynamometer examination. A magnetic resonance imaging scan was performed at 6 months postoperatively. Results: The 2 randomized groups were homogeneous. Western Ontario Rotator Cuff (WORC) scores were not statistically different at any time interval. The WORC scores changed from 1257 to 139 in the control group and from 1106 to 99 in the PRPFM group over the 24-month study period. On the Simple Shoulder Test, improvement over the study period was noted from 45% to 96% in the control group and from 49% to 96% in the PRPFM group. Strength of the supraspinatus at 24 months by dynamometer testing was 99.8% in the control group and 96.3% in the PRPFM group. Infraspinatus strength was 104% in the control group and 103% in the PRPFM group. The secondary outcome of retear occurred at a rate of 19% for the double-row technique and 7.4% for the PRPFM technique at 6 months. All our results were statistically insignificant. Conclusions: Our results showed no benefit from PRPFM used for rotator cuff repair according to the WORC Index, Simple Shoulder Test, and shoulder strength index.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1553-1563
Number of pages11
JournalJournal of Shoulder and Elbow Surgery
Issue number9
StatePublished - Sep 2018


  • Level II
  • Platelet-rich plasma
  • Randomized Controlled Trial
  • Treatment Study
  • double row
  • fibrin membrane
  • randomized controlled trial
  • retear
  • rotator cuff repair


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