Superior Capsule Reconstruction and Lower Trapezius Transfer for Irreparable Posterior-Superior Rotator Cuff Tear: A Case Report

JBJS Case Connect. 2022 Jun 8;12(2). doi: 10.2106/JBJS.CC.22.00098. eCollection 2022 Apr 1.


Case: A 49-year-old right-hand-dominant male weightlifter was referred with persistent left shoulder pain, weakness, and range of motion limitations after failed arthroscopic rotator cuff repair and subsequent arthroscopic debridement for a massive posterior-superior supraspinatus and infraspinatus tear. The patient underwent a superior capsular reconstruction (SCR) with lower trapezius (LT) transfer to re-establish rotator cuff function.

Conclusion: LT transfer in addition to SCR may be a promising modality to treat massive, irreparable posterior-superior rotator cuff tears in young adults. LT transfer can optimize external rotation, whereas SCR may more adequately address pain and forward elevation.

Publication types

  • Case Reports

MeSH terms

  • Arthroscopy
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Rotator Cuff / surgery
  • Rotator Cuff Injuries* / surgery
  • Shoulder Joint* / surgery
  • Superficial Back Muscles* / surgery