Does Medial-Row Fixation Technique Affect the Retear Rate and Functional Outcomes After Double-Row Transosseous-Equivalent Rotator Cuff Repair?Orthop J Sports Med 2019; 7(5):2325967119842881OJ
Double-row transosseous-equivalent (TOE) rotator cuff repair techniques have been widely accepted because of their superior biomechanical properties when compared with arthroscopic single-row repair. Concerns regarding repair overtensioning with medial-row knot tying have led to increased interest in knotless repair techniques; however, there is a paucity of clinical data to guide the choice of technique.
Arthroscopic TOE repair techniques using knotless medial-row fixation will demonstrate lower retear rates and greater improvements in the Constant score relative to conventional knot-tying TOE techniques.
Systematic review; Level of evidence, 4.
A systematic review of 3 databases (PubMed, Cochrane, and Embase) was performed using PRISMA (Preferred Reporting Items for Systematic Meta-Analyses) guidelines. Inclusion criteria were English-language studies that examined repair integrity or Constant scores after arthroscopic rotator cuff repair with TOE techniques. Two investigators independently screened results for relevant articles. Data regarding the study design, surgical technique, retear rate, and Constant shoulder score were extracted from eligible studies. A quality assessment of all articles was performed using the Methodological Index for Non-Randomized Studies (MINORS) criteria.
The systematic review identified a total of 32 studies (level of evidence, 1-4) that met inclusion and exclusion criteria. Of the 32 studies, 5 reported on knotless TOE techniques, 25 reported on knot-tying TOE techniques, and 2 reported on both. In the knotless group, retear rates ranged from 6% to 36%, and Constant scores ranged from 38-65 (preoperative) to 73-83 (postoperative). In the knot-tying group, retear rates ranged from 0% to 48%, and Constant scores ranged from 42-64 (preoperative) to 55-96 (postoperative).
Despite several theoretical advantages of knotless TOE repair, both knotless and knot-tying techniques reported considerable improvement in functional outcomes after rotator cuff repair. Although tendon failure rates showed a downward trend in knotless studies, additional prospective studies are warranted to better understand the role of medial-row fixation on tendon repair integrity and postoperative clinical outcomes.