Clinical midterm results of arthroscopic rotator cuff repair in patients older than 75 years

J Shoulder Elbow Surg. 2020 Sep;29(9):1815-1820. doi: 10.1016/j.jse.2020.01.093. Epub 2020 Mar 4.


Background: The effect of patient age on functional improvement after arthroscopic rotator cuff repair (ARCR) is still a matter of debate. The purpose of this study was to evaluate the clinical midterm results after ARCR in patients who were 75 years or older at the time of surgery.

Methods: A total of 31 shoulders in 30 patients older than 75 years at the time of surgery underwent ARCR for a degenerative full-thickness rotator cuff tear (RCT) between 2010 and 2016. Among those, 23 shoulders in 22 patients (74%) with a mean age at time of surgery of 77 ± 2 years (range, 75-82 years) were followed up after a mean of 7 ± 2 years (range, 3-9 years). Clinical assessment included the Western Ontario Rotator Cuff (WORC) index as well as patient satisfaction, the Subjective Shoulder Value (SSV), Simple Shoulder Test (SST), and the American Shoulder and Elbow Surgeons Standardized Shoulder Assessment Form (ASES) score.

Results: Overall, patient satisfaction was excellent, as everybody stated to be very satisfied with the surgery. Neither any complication nor revision surgery occurred during the study period. At final follow-up, the mean WORC index was 88% ± 15%. The mean SSV was comparable between the affected shoulder (90% ± 15%) and the contralateral side (87% ± 15%) (P = .235). The mean SST score was 10 ± 2 points and the mean ASES score was 89 ± 17 points.

Conclusion: ARCR for symptomatic RCTs without advanced muscle degeneration in patients older than 75 years at the time of surgery provided good clinical results and high patient satisfaction at midterm follow-up.

Keywords: Rotator cuff repair; arthroscopy; elderly; midterm results; patient age; patient satisfaction.

MeSH terms

  • Aged
  • Aged, 80 and over
  • Arthroscopy / methods*
  • Female
  • Follow-Up Studies
  • Humans
  • Lacerations / surgery*
  • Male
  • Patient Satisfaction
  • Reoperation
  • Rotator Cuff / surgery*
  • Rotator Cuff Injuries / surgery*
  • Shoulder / surgery*
  • Treatment Outcome