Every month, JBJS publishes a review of the most pertinent and impactful studies published in the orthopaedic literature during the previous year in 14 subspecialties. Click here for a collection of all such OrthoBuzz Guest Editorial summaries.

This month, co-author Rachel M. Frank, MD summarizes the 5 most compelling findings from the >30 studies highlighted in the April 21, 2021 “What’s New in Sports Medicine.”

Anterior Cruciate Ligament (ACL)

–Two-year results from the STABILITY randomized controlled trial (RCT)1 comparing single-bundle, hamstring-autograft ACL reconstruction with or without lateral extra-articular tenodesis demonstrated a

4% graft failure in the tenodesis group versus 11% in the non-tenodesis group. Both groups had similar levels of sports activity at 2 years.

Meniscus

–A matched cohort comparison of 45 posterior medial meniscal root tears2 treated either nonoperatively, with partial meniscectomy, or with root repair found the following at a mean of 74 months:

  • No significant between-group differences in patient-reported outcomes (IKDC and Tegner scores)
  • Progression to arthroplasty in 60% of those who underwent partial meniscectomy, 27% of those treated nonoperatively, and 0% of those who underwent root repair
  • Less arthritic progression on radiographs in the root-repair group relative to the other 2 groups

Rotator Cuff

A multicenter Level-II study compared 96 patients with a rotator cuff tear who underwent nonoperative treatment with 73 similar patients who underwent a surgical procedure. At approximately 3 months, patients in the nonoperative group had significantly better outcomes, but after 1 to 2 years, surgical patients did better in terms of ASES and SPADI scores.

Hip Preservation

–A meta-analysis of 3 RCTs (n=650 patients)3 comparing physical therapy with hip arthroscopy for treating femoroacetabular impingement found the following:

  • Greater improvement in the arthroscopy group (as measured with the International Hip Outcome Tool-33) at 10 months
  • No between-group differences in 1 of the 3 RCTs at 1 or 2 years when the Hip Outcome Score-ADL and -Sports scales were used

The authors concluded that “hip arthroscopy had significantly superior short-term outcomes.”

Long Head of the Biceps Tendon

–A prospective RCT4 compared biceps tenodesis with biceps tenotomy in >100 patients with pathology of the long head of the biceps tendon. At the 2-year follow-up, the authors found no between-group differences in cramping, elbow flexion strength, or supination strength. The only significant difference was the incidence of a cosmetic Popeye deformity, which was associated with a 3.5 times higher risk after tenotomy.

References

  1. Getgood AMJ, et al. for the STABILITY Study Group. Lateral extra-articular tenodesis reduces failure of hamstring tendon autograft anterior cruciate ligament reconstruction: 2-year outcomes from the STABILITY study randomized clinical trial. Am J Sports Med.2020 Feb;48(2):285-97. Epub 2020 Jan 15.
  2. Bernard CD, Kennedy NI, Tagliero AJ, Camp CL, Saris DBF, Levy BA, Stuart MJ, Krych AJ. Medial meniscus posterior root tear treatment: a matched cohort comparison of nonoperative management, partial meniscectomy, and repair. Am J Sports Med.2020 Jan;48(1):128-32. Epub 2019 Nov 25.
  3. Dwyer T, Whelan D, Shah PS, Ajrawat P, Hoit G, Chahal J. Operative versus nonoperative treatment of femoroacetabular impingement syndrome: a meta-analysis of short-term outcomes. 2020 Jan;36(1):263-73.
  4. MacDonald P, Verhulst F, McRae S, Old J, Stranges G, Dubberley J, Mascarenhas R, Koenig J, Leiter J, Nassar M, Lapner P. Biceps tenodesis versus tenotomy in the treatment of lesions of the long head of the biceps tendon in patients undergoing arthroscopic shoulder surgery: a prospective double-blinded randomized controlled trial. Am J Sports Med.2020 May;48(6):1439-49. Epub 2020 Mar 30.

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