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Gülecyüz, Mehmet; Bortolotti, Hannes; Pietschmann, Matthias; Ficklscherer, Andreas; Niethammer, Thomas; Roßbach, Björn and Müller, Peter (2016): Primary stability of rotator cuff repair: can more suture materials yield more strength? In: International Orthopaedics, Vol. 40, No. 5: pp. 989-997

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Introduction It remains unclear if the increased biomechanical stability of the double-row repair is solely a result of the technique itself or due to the greater number of utilized materials. This study analyses the various rotator cuff (RC) repair interfaces and the influence of doubling the number of suture knots, stitch techniques and suture anchors on the primary stability of the RC reconstruction. Materials and methods Established cyclic testing protocols were used to test the primary stability of the knot interface with a Duncan loop and Roeder knot, the tendon-to-suture interface with a single-stitch and Mason-Allen-stitch and the anchor-to-bone interface with OPUS Magnum 2 (R) and BioCorkscrew (R) anchors. After doubling the materials, the interfaces were tested again and compared to the yielded solitary values. The maximum failure loads (F-max), clinical failure (CF), system displacement (SD) and modes of failure were recorded. Results Doubling the amount of knots, stitches and suture anchors improved almost all interface parameters. For example, F-max, CF and SD of the Roeder knot could be significantly improved from 142.5 N to 256.7 N, from 82.5 N to 155.0 N and from 0.45 mm to 0.20 mm, respectively. The MasonAllen stitch's Fmax improved from 196.4 N to 324.9 N, and CF from 94.25 N to 139.8 N, with almost identical SD of 0.81 mm and 0.84 mm. Bio-Corkscrew (R) F-max improved from 232.5 N to 317.5 N, CF from 182.5 N to 210 N, and SD from 0.85 mm to 0.64 mm. Conclusion Doubling the number of knots, stitches and suture anchors increases the primary stability of the various RC repair interfaces and may result in RC rerupture rate reduction. Furthermore, this study suggests that a suture anchor loaded with two or three sutures may yield the same primary stability as two or three suture anchors loadedwith a single suture. This in vitro biomechanical study focuses solely on the rotator cuff interfaces at time zero;the biological healing process was therefore not analysed and requires further investigation. Clinical relevance Improved primary stability by increased number of suture materials may reduce rate of RC rerupture.

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