What is a Double-Row or Suture Bridge Rotator Cuff Repair?
Patients in the Manchester, South Windsor, Enfield, Glastonbury and surrounding Hartford communities may have what is called a “double row” or suture bridge arthroscopic rotator cuff repair. Double row fixation technique is done with a double row of sutures. Studies have shown that double row sutures result in significantly less re-tear rates with increased load-to-failure of the tendon.
How Long Does Rotator Cuff Surgery Take?
An MRI, an in-office ultrasound, and other diagnostic tools can give Dr. Mazzara an idea of how much damage the shoulder joint and the rotator cuff has sustained. The patient will be given an idea of the timeframe for surgery; however, it will depend on the complexity of the injury. In most cases, arthroscopic rotator cuff surgery takes 60 to 90 minutes.
How Long Will it Take for the Rotator Cuff to Heal?
Healing time for the average patient in good health is six months. The following timeline is recommended by Dr. Mazzara:
- Directly after surgery – Immobilization; the arm is typically kept in a sling. Use of a sling keeps the weight of the arm off the healing tendon.
- Day after surgery – Range of motion physical therapy, which may depend on the size of the tear and quality of the bone and tendon. Passive motion, used to keep the arm moving and is done by someone else, moving the arm.
- 1st few days – up to 3 weeks – Passive Motion. Passive motion is when someone else moves the arm.
- Between 3-6 weeks – Active Assisted Motion. Patients are allowed to move the arm themselves with the assistance of a pulley or other aid.
- 4-6 weeks after surgery – Active motion physical therapy is recommended, along with strengthening exercises starting no sooner than 10 weeks.
- 3-6 months –Begin a return to full recovery with unrestricted activity and return to normal sports or work activities. No limitations after 6 months. Improvements in function, motion and strength will continue for a year or more after a successful repair.
Physical therapy performed by a skilled professional and recommended by Dr. Mazzara is key to patient success following an arthroscopic rotator cuff repair. It is important that each patient adhere to a strict rehabilitation protocol.
For additional resources on arthroscopic rotator cuff repair, in the Manchester, South Windsor, Enfield, Glastonbury and surrounding Hartford communities, please contact the orthopedic practice of Dr. James Mazzara, shoulder surgeon.