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Jonathon C Coward, Stefan Bauer, Stephanie M Babic, Charline Coron, Taro Okamoto, and William G Blakeney

  • Decision-making for the treatment of pseudoparalytic shoulders is complex and a high level of experience in shoulder surgery and outcome evaluation is required.

  • Management and results depend on clinical findings, tear and tissue quality, patient and surgeon criteria. Clinical findings determine the exact definition and direction of pseudoparesis and pseudoparalysis.

  • Tear pattern and tissue quality determine if the rotator cuff is repairable or irreparable. Age and general health are important patient factors.

  • Non-operative treatment is the first option for patients with a higher risk profile for reconstruction or arthroplasty, but delineation of its value requires better evidence.

  • Tendon transfers are used for irreparable loss of the horizontal force couple balance (rotation). Options include latissimus dorsi, pectoralis minor and major for loss of active internal rotation, and latissimus dorsi ± teres major and lower trapezius for loss of active external rotation (AER).

  • Partial cuff repair with or without superior capsular reconstruction using allograft or biceps tendon is an option for loss of active forward elevation.

  • Treatment for the combined loss of elevation and external rotation patients is still not clear. Options include lateralised reverse shoulder arthroplasty (RSA) alone or combined RSA with a tendon transfer.

  • RSA with loss of AER can be revised by adding a tendon transfer.

Marko Nabergoj, Patrick J. Denard, Philippe Collin, Rihard Trebše, and Alexandre Lädermann

  • The initial reverse shoulder arthroplasty (RSA), designed by Paul Grammont, was intended to treat rotator cuff tear arthropathy in elderly patients. In the early experience, high complication rates (up to 24%) and revision rates (up to 50%) were reported.

  • The most common complications reported were scapular notching, whereas clinically more relevant complications such as instability and acromial fractures were less commonly described.

  • Zumstein et al defined a ‘complication’ following RSA as any intraoperative or postoperative event that was likely to have a negative influence on the patient’s final outcome.

  • High rates of complications related to the Grammont RSA design led to development of non-Grammont designs, with 135 or 145 degrees of humeral inclination, multiple options for glenosphere size and eccentricity, improved baseplate fixation which facilitated glenoid-sided lateralization, and the option of humeral-sided lateralization.

  • Improved implant characteristics combined with surgeon experience led to a dramatic fall in the majority of complications. However, we still lack a suitable solution for several complications, such as acromial stress fracture.

Cite this article: EFORT Open Rev 2021;6:1097-1108. DOI: 10.1302/2058-5241.6.210039

Marko Nabergoj, Patrick J. Denard, Philippe Collin, Rihard Trebše, and Alexandre Lädermann

  • Early reported complication rates with the Grammont-type reverse shoulder arthroplasty (RSA) were very high, up to 24%.

  • A ‘problem’ is defined as an intraoperative or postoperative event that is not likely to affect the patient’s final outcome, such as intraoperative cement extravasation and radiographic changes. A ‘complication’ is defined as an intraoperative or postoperative event that is likely to affect the patient’s final outcome, including infection, neurologic injury and intrathoracic central glenoid screw placement.

  • Radiographic changes around the glenoid or humeral components of the RSA are very frequently observed and described in the literature.

  • High complication rates related to the Grammont RSA design led to development of non-Grammont designs which led to a dramatic fall in the majority of complications.

  • The percentage of radiological changes after RSA is not negligible and remains unsolved, despite a decrease in its occurrence in the last decade. However, such changes should be now considered as simple problems because they rarely have a negative influence on the patient’s final outcome, and their prevalence has dramatically decreased.

  • With further changes in indications and designs for RSA, it is crucial to accurately track the rates and types of complications to justify its new designs and increased indications.

Cite this article: EFORT Open Rev 2021;6:1109-1121. DOI: 10.1302/2058-5241.6.210040

Jinlong Zhao, Jianke Pan, Ling-feng Zeng, Ming Wu, Weiyi Yang, and Jun Liu

  • Rotator cuff tears are a common condition of the shoulder, and 20.7% of people with the condition have a full-thickness rotator cuff tear. The purpose of this study was to explore the risk factors for full-thickness rotator cuff tears and to provide evidence to support the accurate diagnosis of full-thickness rotator cuff tears.

  • Studies from PubMed, Embase and Web of Science published before 30 January 2021 were retrieved. All cohort studies and cross-sectional studies on risk factors for full-thickness rotator cuff tears were included. A meta-analysis was performed in RevMan 5.3 to calculate the relative risks (RRs) or weighted mean differences (WMDs) of related risk factors. Stata 15.1 was used for the quantitative analysis of publication bias.

  • In total, 11 articles from six countries, including 4047 cases, with 1518 cases and 2529 controls, were included. The meta-analysis showed that age (MD = 0.76, 95% CI: 0.24 to 1.28, P = 0.004), hypertension (RR = 1.46, 95% CI: 1.17 to 1.81, P = 0.0007) and critical shoulder angle (CSA) (MD = 2.02, 95% CI: 1.55 to 2.48, P < 0.00001) were risk factors for full-thickness rotator cuff tears.

  • Our results also suggested that body mass index, sex, dominant hand, smoking, diabetes mellitus and thyroid disease were not risk factors for full-thickness rotator cuff tears. Early identification of risk factors for full-thickness rotator cuff tears is helpful in identifying high-risk patients and choosing the appropriate treatment.

Cite this article: EFORT Open Rev 2021;6:1087-1096. DOI: 10.1302/2058-5241.6.210027

Pieter Caekebeke, Joris Duerinckx, and Roger van Riet

  • Acute distal biceps tendon (DBT) pathology includes bicipitoradial bursitis, tendinosis, partial and complete tears.

  • Diagnosis of complete DBT tears is mainly clinical, whereas in partial tears medical imaging is a valuable addition to the clinical diagnosis.

  • New insights in clinical and medical imaging of partial tears may reduce time to diagnosis and may guide the treatment plan.

  • Most complete tears are best treated with primary repair using either a single-incision or double-incision approach with good clinical outcome.

  • The double-incision technique has a higher risk of heterotopic ossification, whereas a single-incision technique carries a higher risk of nerve-related complications.

  • Intramedullary fixation may be a viable solution to negate the risk of posterior interosseus nerve lesions in single-incision repairs.

  • DBT endoscopy can be used to treat low-grade partial tears and tendinosis.

Cite this article: EFORT Open Rev 2021;6:956-965. DOI: 10.1302/2058-5241.6.200145

Patrick Goetti, Patrick J. Denard, Philippe Collin, Mohamed Ibrahim, Adrien Mazzolari, and Alexandre Lädermann

  • The biomechanics of the shoulder relies on careful balancing between stability and mobility. A thorough understanding of normal and degenerative shoulder anatomy is necessary, as the goal of anatomic total shoulder arthroplasty is to reproduce premorbid shoulder kinematics.

  • With reported joint reaction forces up to 2.4 times bodyweight, failure to restore anatomy and therefore provide a stable fulcrum will result in early implant failure secondary to glenoid loosening.

  • The high variability of proximal humeral anatomy can be addressed with modular stems or stemless humeral components. The development of three-dimensional planning has led to a better understanding of the complex nature of glenoid bone deformity in eccentric osteoarthritis.

  • The treatment of cuff tear arthropathy patients was revolutionized by the arrival of Grammont’s reverse shoulder arthroplasty. The initial design medialized the centre of rotation and distalized the humerus, allowing up to a 42% increase in the deltoid moment arm.

  • More modern reverse designs have maintained the element of restored stability but sought a more anatomic postoperative position to minimize complications and maximize rotational range of motion.

Cite this article: EFORT Open Rev 2021;6:918-931. DOI: 10.1302/2058-5241.6.210014

Heri Suroto, Brigita De Vega, Fani Deapsari, Tabita Prajasari, Pramono Ari Wibowo, and Steven K. Samijo

  • Despite rapid medical technology development, various challenges exist in three- and four-part proximal humeral fracture (PHF) management. This condition has led to a notably increased use of the reverse total shoulder arthroplasty (RTSA); however, open reduction and internal fixation (ORIF) is still the most widely performed procedure. Thus, these two modalities are crucial and require further discussion. We aim to compare the outcomes of three- or four-part PHF surgeries using ORIF and RTSA based on direct/head-to-head comparative studies.

  • We conducted a systematic review and meta-analysis based on the Cochrane handbook and PRISMA guidelines. We searched MEDLINE (PubMed), Embase (Ovid), and CENTRAL (Cochrane Library) from inception to October 2020. Our protocol was registered at PROSPERO (registration number CRD42020214681). We assessed the individual study risk of bias using ROB 2 and ROBINS-I tools, then appraised our evidence using the GRADE approach.

  • Six head-to-head comparative studies were included, comprising one RCT and five retrospective case-control studies. We found that RTSA significantly improved forward flexion but was comparable to ORIF in abduction (p = 0.03 and p = 0.47, respectively) and more inferior in external rotation (p < 0.0001). Moreover, RTSA improved the overall Constant-Murley score, but the difference was not significant (p = 0.22). Interestingly, RTSA increased complications (by 42%) but reduced the revision surgery rates (by 63%) compared to ORIF (p = 0.04 and p = 0.02, respectively).

  • RTSA is recommended to treat patients aged 65 years or older with a three- or four-part PHF. Compared to ORIF, RTSA resulted in better forward flexion and Constant-Murley score, equal abduction, less external rotation, increased complications but fewer revision surgeries.

Cite this article: EFORT Open Rev 2021;6:941-955. DOI: 10.1302/2058-5241.6.210049

Diana Cabral Teixeira, Luís Alves, and Manuel Gutierres

  • Scapular dyskinesis can be present in healthy individuals as in patients with shoulder pathology.

  • Altered patterns of scapular kinematics can cause or exacerbate rotator cuff tear pathology. However, more research is needed.

  • Regardless of the cause or the consequence of rotator cuff tear, scapular dyskinesis impairs shoulder function, worsens the symptoms, and compromises the success of clinical intervention.

  • The available literature suggests physical therapy as the first treatment for degenerative cuff tears, and scapular dyskinesis should be addressed if present. Non-responsive cases or traumatic tears may require surgery.

  • Postsurgical physical therapy protocols after rotator cuff repair must consider scapular dyskinesia to improve the outcomes.

Cite this article: EFORT Open Rev 2021;6:932-940. DOI: 10.1302/2058-5241.6.210043

Roberto Padua, Laura de Girolamo, Alberto Grassi, and Davide Cucchi

  • This study was designed to identify the most frequent shoulder patient-reported outcome measures (PROMs) reported in high-quality literature.

  • A systematic review was performed to identify shoulder PROMs, and their diffusion within the scientific literature was tested with a subsequent dedicated search in MEDLINE.

  • 506 studies were included in the final data analysis, for a total number of 36,553 patients.

  • The Disabilities of the Arm, Shoulder and Hand questionnaire (DASH), the American Shoulder, Elbow Surgeons Score (ASES) and the Shoulder Pain and Disability Index (SPADI) were the most frequently reported PROMs in the analysed publications, with disease-specific PROMs being used with increasing frequency.

  • A core set of outcome measures for future studies on patients with shoulder pathologies, based on the international acceptance and diffusion of each PROM, is needed.

  • A combination of the DASH score for shoulder outcome assessment with more specific PROMs, such as the ASES for rotator cuff pathology and osteoarthritis and the SPADI for shoulder stiffness and shoulder pain of unspecified origin, is proposed as a recommended set of PROMs.

Cite this article: EFORT Open Rev 2021;6:779-787. DOI: 10.1302/2058-5241.6.200109

Michał Górecki and Piotr Czarnecki

  • Based on the literature, 294 shoulder arthrodeses after brachial plexus injury in adults were assessed, mostly male; the mean age of the patients was 33 years, and the mean follow-up time was 5.5 years. The most common cause of injury was a traffic accident, especially on a motorcycle.

  • Arthrodesis position ranged from 15 to 40 degrees of flexion, 15 to 60 degrees of abduction, and 0 to 50 degrees of internal rotation with the predominance of position by the 30-30-30 rule. Plates, screws, and external fixation were used for stabilization. The complication rate was at the level of 28%, the most common complication being delayed union or nonunion.

  • Active movements of flexion and abduction averaged 61 and 56 degrees, respectively, while reaching the hand to the mouth, front pocket, and buttock was feasible for 69%, 71%, and 38%, respectively, after surgery. Shoulder pain was present in 77% of patients, and 28% experienced no relevant pain reduction after surgery. The subjective satisfaction rate was 82% based on significant improvement and satisfaction reported by patients after arthrodesis.

  • Arthrodesis of the shoulder, in adult patients after brachial plexus palsy, can reduce shoulder pain, increase stability, and result in a range of motion that increases the possibility of carrying out everyday activities. This affects the high level of subjective patient satisfaction after surgery.

Cite this article: EFORT Open Rev 2021;6:797-807. DOI: 10.1302/2058-5241.6.200114