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Scientific Articles   |    
Clinical, Radiographic, and Ultrasonographic Comparison of Subscapularis Tenotomy and Lesser Tuberosity Osteotomy for Total Shoulder Arthroplasty
Jason J. Scalise, MD1; James Ciccone, RN2; Joseph P. Iannotti, MD, PhD2
1 The CORE Institute, 3010 West Agua Fria Freeway, Suite 100, Phoenix, AZ 85027. E-mail address: jason.scalise@thecoreinstitute.com
2 Department of Orthopaedic Surgery, Cleveland Clinic, 9500 Euclid Avenue, A-41, Cleveland, OH 44195. E-mail address for J. Ciccone: cicconj@ccf.org. E-mail address for J.P. Iannotti: iannotj@ccf.org
View Disclosures and Other Information
Disclosure: The authors did not receive any outside funding or grants in support of their research for or preparation of this work. Neither they nor a member of their immediate families received payments or other benefits or a commitment or agreement to provide such benefits from a commercial entity. Commercial entities (DePuy, Johnson and Johnson; and Tornier) paid or directed in any one year, or agreed to pay or direct, benefits in excess of $10,000 to a research fund, foundation, division, center, clinical practice, or other charitable or nonprofit organization with which one or more of the authors, or a member of his or her immediate family, is affiliated or associated.

Investigation performed at the Cleveland Clinic, Cleveland, Ohio
A video supplement to this article will be available from the Video Journal of Orthopaedics. A video clip will be available at the JBJS web site, www.jbjs.org. The Video Journal of Orthopaedics can be contacted at (805) 962-3410, web site: www.vjortho.com.

Copyright ©2010 American Society for Journal of Bone and Joint Surgery, Inc.
J Bone Joint Surg Am, 2010 Jul 07;92(7):1627-1634. doi: 10.2106/JBJS.G.01461
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Abstract

Background: 

Recently, a lesser tuberosity osteotomy has been promoted as an alternative to tenotomy for release of the subscapularis during shoulder arthroplasty. To our knowledge, no direct comparison of the clinical results of the two techniques has been presented.

Methods: 

Thirty-five shoulders in thirty-four consecutive patients with osteoarthritis who had a primary total shoulder arthroplasty, performed with use of a standard subscapularis tenotomy (Group 1) or lesser tuberosity osteotomy (Group 2) to release the subscapularis, were evaluated retrospectively at an average of thirty-three months. Group 1 consisted of fifteen shoulders in fourteen patients (seven in males and eight in females, with an average age of sixty-seven years). Group 2 consisted of twenty shoulders in twenty patients (fourteen males and six females, with an average age of sixty-nine years). Assessment included a physical examination, clinical outcome questionnaires, conventional radiography, ultrasound examination of the subscapularis, and measurement of internal rotation strength.

Results: 

The postoperative total Penn Shoulder Scores improved significantly from the preoperative levels in both groups (mean and standard deviation, 29 ± 15 points to 81 ± 20 points [p < 0.00001] in Group 1 and 29 ± 16 points to 92 ± 11 points [p < 0.00001] in Group 2). However, the postoperative mean total Penn Shoulder Score was higher in Group 2 (92 ± 11 points) than in Group 1 (81 ± 20 points) (p = 0.04). At one year, an abnormal subscapularis on ultrasound was associated with a lower mean Penn Shoulder Score in Group 1 (73 ± 19 points compared with 92 ± 3 points; p = 0.01). However, at a minimum two-year follow-up, this difference was not significant (mean, 74 ± 24 points and 86 ± 15 points, respectively; p = 0.25). There were more abnormal subscapularis tendons in Group 1 (six attenuated tendons and one full-thickness tear) than in Group 2 (two attenuated tendons). Internal rotation strength did not differ between the groups when controlled for sex (mean, 117 ± 8 N and 127 ± 21 N for males in Group 1 and Group 2, respectively [p = 0.22] and 77 ± 27 N and 101 ± 26 N, respectively, for females [p = 0.1]).

Conclusions: 

Both techniques resulted in improved clinical outcome scores. The lesser tuberosity osteotomy resulted in higher clinical outcome scores, a lower rate of subscapularis tendon tears, and universal healing of the osteotomy. This technique offers a means by which the rate of postoperative subscapularis tears may be reduced in patients undergoing total shoulder arthroplasty.

Level of Evidence: 

Therapeutic Level III. See Instructions to Authors for a complete description of levels of evidence.

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    Accreditation Statement
    These activities have been planned and implemented in accordance with the Essential Areas and policies of the Accreditation Council for Continuing Medical Education (ACCME) through the joint sponsorship of the American Academy of Orthopaedic Surgeons and The Journal of Bone and Joint Surgery, Inc. The American Academy of Orthopaedic Surgeons is accredited by the ACCME to provide continuing medical education for physicians.
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