Reverse shoulder arthroplasty for rotator cuff tears with and without prior failed rotator cuff repair: A large-scale comparative analysis

Alexander J. Vervaecke, Andrew D. Carbone, Nicole Zubizarreta, Jashvant Poeran, Bradford O. Parsons, Olivier Verborgt, Leesa M. Galatz, Paul J. Cagle

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2 Scopus citations


Background: Large-scale data assessing the effect of a prior failed rotator cuff repair (RCR) on the outcome of reverse shoulder arthroplasty (RSA) is currently lacking. Therefore, this study aimed (1) to assess the course of patients undergoing RCR, specifically focusing on the need for conversion to RSA within two years, and (2) to compare outcomes following RSA performed for rotator cuff tears (RCTs) with and without prior RCR. Methods: This retrospective cohort study included data from the CMS Data Set (2016–2018). For the first study objective, we included patients undergoing an RCR; these were followed for 24 months to identify a conversion to RSA. For the second study objective, we included RSAs for RCTs, stratified by those with and without a prior RCR (preceding 24 months). Outcomes (hospitalization cost, institutional post-acute care discharge, 90-day readmission and health resource utilization up to 6 months post-RSA) were compared between propensity score-matched groups. Results: Out of 33,244 RCRs, 433 (1.3%) patients underwent RSA conversion within two years. Among 7534 RSA cases for RCTs, 245 (3.3%) had an RCR in the preceding two years. In the propensity score analysis, except for a minimal increase in the number of physical rehabilitation visits (RR 1.10; p = 0.0009), no differences were observed between those with and without prior RCR in terms of other RSA outcomes. These included hospitalization cost, discharge to institutional post-acute care facility, 90-day readmission and 6-month post-op cost Conclusion: Rotator cuff repair in elderly patients, when utilizing currently employed indication criteria, results in low conversion rates to RSA within 2 years postoperatively. Furthermore, large dataset outcomes after RSA for RCT such as cost, post-acute care discharge, physical rehabilitation, and readmission rates appear not to be negatively affected by the presence of a prior RCR. Level of evidence: Level 3 evidence; Retrospective cohort study.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1-5
Number of pages5
JournalJournal of Orthopaedics
StatePublished - 1 May 2022


  • Decision-making
  • Elderly population
  • Failed repair
  • Reverse shoulder arthroplasty
  • Revision rotator cuff repair
  • Rotator cuff repair
  • Rotator cuff tear


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