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The Journal of Bone & Joint Surgery British Volume
Vol. 87-B, Issue 6 | Pages 819 - 823
1 Jun 2005
Boehm TD Werner A Radtke S Mueller T Kirschner S Gohlke F

In a prospective, randomised study on the repair of tears of the rotator cuff we compared the clinical results of two suture techniques for which different suture materials were used.

We prospectively randomised 100 patients with tears of the rotator cuff into two groups. Group 1 had transosseous repair with No. 3 Ethibond using modified Mason-Allen sutures and group 2 had transosseous repair with 1.0 mm polydioxanone cord using modified Kessler sutures. After 24 to 30 months the patients were evaluated clinically using the Constant score and by ultrasonography.

Of the 100 patients, 92 completed the study. No significant statistical difference was seen between the two groups: Constant score, 91% vs 92%; rate of further tear, 18% vs 22%; and revision, 4% vs 4%. In cases of further tear the outcome in group 2 did not differ from that for the intact repairs (91% vs 91%), but in group 1 it was significantly worse (94% vs 77%, p = 0.005).

Overall, seven patients had complications which required revision surgery, in four for pain (two in each group) and in three for infection (two in group 1 and one in group 2).