Patient Outcomes After Horizontal Cleavage Tear Repair: A Systematic Review

Arthroscopy. 2020 Aug;36(8):2316-2331. doi: 10.1016/j.arthro.2020.04.027. Epub 2020 Apr 28.


Purpose: To analyze the clinical outcomes and survivorship of meniscal horizontal cleavage tear (HCT) repairs with hopes of guiding future treatment decisions.

Methods: Standard systematic review methodology was used. A comprehensive search of PubMed was conducted on June 1, 2019. The inclusion criteria were articles that were published in English, involved human subjects, and reported on at least 1 outcome after repair of HCTs. The exclusion criteria included technique guides and reviews, studies without full text available, and studies with HCT outcomes not separated from other repair groups. Effect heterogeneity was determined using the I2 measure. Forest plots were created in addition to a random-effects model to show the results.

Results: The systematic review yielded 19 studies evaluating 289 knees in a total of 273 patients. At most recent follow-up, there was a high probability of return to sport (93.1% [67 of 72]). Overall, 74% of patients (67 of 90) were symptom free at last follow-up, and 80% expressed satisfaction with their overall result (80 of 100). The most frequently reported subjective outcome was the Lysholm score, which improved from a preoperative study range of 48 to 79 (I2 = 20.7%, P = .283) to a postoperative study range of 56 to 99 (I2 = 49%, P = .081). The next most commonly reported was the International Knee Documentation Committee subjective score, which improved from a preoperative study range of 16 to 49 (I2 = 47.7%, P = .125) to a postoperative study range of 72 to 95 (I2 = 0%, P = .660). An overall 11.7% reported risk of reoperation was found, with most cases involving revision meniscectomy. Rates of complications beyond fixation failure were overall very low, with infrequent reports of septic arthritis and transitory dysesthesia.

Conclusions: The short- to intermediate-term results of repair of HCTs are comparable to prior studies. Survivorship is comparable to repairs of other types of meniscal tears with high rates of return to sport and low complication rates.

Level of evidence: Level IV, systematic review of Level I-IV studies.

Publication types

  • Systematic Review

MeSH terms

  • Arthroscopy / methods*
  • Humans
  • Knee Injuries / surgery
  • Knee Joint
  • Lacerations / surgery
  • Meniscectomy / methods*
  • Menisci, Tibial / surgery
  • Osteoarthritis / surgery*
  • Postoperative Period
  • Reoperation
  • Return to Sport
  • Rupture / surgery
  • Severity of Illness Index
  • Tibial Meniscus Injuries / surgery*
  • Treatment Outcome