Patient-Reported Outcomes of Knotted and Knotless Glenohumeral Labral Repairs Are Equivalent

Am J Orthop (Belle Mead NJ). Nov/Dec 2017;46(6):279-283.


We conducted a study to compare the clinical results and operative times of knotted and knotless fixation of anterior and posterior glenohumeral labral repairs and superior labrum anterior to posterior (SLAP) repairs. We retrospectively evaluated data that had been prospectively collected from a Surgical Outcomes System database. Knotted and knotless techniques for 226 repairs (59 isolated anterior labral, 95 posterior labral, 72 SLAP) were compared on patient-reported outcome measures (PROMs), including American Shoulder and Elbow Surgeons (ASES) score, visual analog scale pain score, and Veterans RAND 12-Item Health Survey score, obtained before surgery and 6 months and 1 year after surgery. Operative time was recorded as well. One-year follow-up was available for all 226 repairs. There was no statistically difference in PROMs between knotted and knotless anterior labral or SLAP repairs at any point (P > .05). ASES scores were higher 6 months after surgery in the knotless group (88.6 vs 84.2; P = .022), but scores 1 year after surgery were the same (88.6 vs 89.8; P = .451). Operative time per anchor was shorter for knotless anterior labral repairs (26 vs 31 min; P = .02) and knotless posterior labral repairs (18 vs 21 min; P = .031) and trended shorter for knotless SLAP repairs (26 vs 37 min; P = .080). There is no difference in PROMs between knotted and knotless labral repairs. Operative times were shorter for anterior and posterior knotless anchors than for knotted anchors. Obtaining equivalent outcomes in less operative time may help decrease healthcare costs and minimize potential complications.

MeSH terms

  • Adolescent
  • Adult
  • Arthroscopy / methods*
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Patient Reported Outcome Measures*
  • Retrospective Studies
  • Shoulder / surgery*
  • Shoulder Joint / surgery*
  • Tendon Injuries / surgery*
  • Young Adult