The Effectiveness of Arthroscopic Superior Capsule Reconstruction

HealthDay News — Arthroscopic superior capsule reconstruction restores shoulder function in patients with irreparable rotator cuff tears that have failed previous treatment, according to a study presented at the American Orthopaedic Society for Sports Medicine’s Specialty Day.

Teruhisa Mihata, MD, PhD, from Osaka Medical College in Takatsuki, Japan, and colleagues performed arthroscopic superior capsule reconstruction in 100 consecutive patients with irreparable rotator cuff tears that had failed conservative treatment. Before surgery and during follow-up the patients underwent physical examination, radiography, and magnetic resonance imaging.

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The researchers observed significant improvement in average postoperative clinical outcome scores at final follow-up (mean, 36.6 months after surgery; P < 0.00001). During the follow-up period, 92% of patients had neither graft tear nor re-tear of the repaired rotator cuff tendon. At final follow-up, significantly better postoperative clinical outcome scores and active elevation were seen for healed versus unhealed patients with graft tear or re-tear. 

Overall, 32 patients returned fully to their previous jobs and 2 returned with reduced hours and workload. Full return to sports was reported for all 26 patients who had played sports before injury.

“Our work on utilizing an arthroscopic superior capsule reconstruction restored shoulder function at a greater rate than previous forms of treatment and helped return our patients to recreational sport and work faster,” Mihata said in a statement.


Mihata T, Lee TQ, Itami Y, Hasegawa A, Ohue M, Neo M. Arthroscopic Superior Capsule Reconstruction for Irreparable Rotator Cuff Tears: A Prospective Clinical Study in 100 Consecutive Patients with 1 To 8 Years of Follow-up. Presented at: American Orthopaedic Society for Sports Medicine’s Specialty Day. March 5, 2016; Orlando, Florida. Presentation 18.