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Comparative Effectiveness of Nonoperative and Operative Treatments for Rotator Cuff Tears

Slide: 32 of 38

Complication Rates for Rotator Cuff Tear Interventions

A total of 85 studies provided data on 34 different complications of nonoperative, operative, and postoperative rehabilitation interventions. Complications were poorly reported, with studies providing limited information on how complications were defined and assessed. In 21 studies, it was reported that no complications occurred during the course of the study. In general, the rates of complications were low and most complications were not deemed to be clinically important or were reported only in a few studies. Throughout, “rate” referred to the number of patients who experienced complications during the study period. Study lengths varied, so no standardized time period was used. The rates of some of the most clinically important operative complications were as follows: retears ≤10%, infection ≤5%, stiffness ≤8%, reflex sympathetic dystrophy ≤2%, and neurological injury ≤6%.