Original Article| Volume 36, ISSUE 3, P648-657, March 2020

The Effect of Delayed Injection of Leukocyte-Rich Platelet-Rich Plasma Following Rotator Cuff Repair on Patient Function: A Randomized Double-Blind Controlled Trial

Published:November 27, 2019DOI:


      To investigate the effect of delayed application of leukocyte-rich platelet-rich plasma (PRP) on rotator cuff repair results as assessed by outcome scores and imaging at one year.


      Patients with a symptomatic rotator cuff tear awaiting arthroscopic repair were approached to take part in the study. Final eligibility for the study was confirmed at the time of surgery. A total of 97 patients were randomized to an ultrasound guided injection of leukocyte-rich PRP or normal saline between 10 and 14 days postsurgery. A total of 87 patients completed clinical evaluation and underwent magnetic resonance imaging imaging at 1 year. Outcome scores included the American Shoulder and Elbow Score, Constant score, Western Ontario Rotator Cuff Index, and the Disabilities of the Arm, Shoulder and Hand Score. Structural integrity of the repair was assessed according to the Sugaya grading. Muscle fatty infiltration was assessed on magnetic resonance imaging using the Goutallier classification.


      At 1 year postsurgery, there was no significant difference between the treatment groups on any of the patient-reported outcome measures or Constant score. On postoperative imaging analysis, there was no difference in the retear rates (Sugaya 4 and 5) between the groups (21% in control group vs 15.3% in PRP group). Fatty infiltration on postoperative imaging was found to be significantly higher in the normal saline group compared with the PRP group (Kendall’s tau-b P = .032).


      The delayed application of PRP postrotator cuff repair did not improve function as measured by patient-reported outcome measures and Constant score at 1 year postoperatively.

      Level of Evidence

      Level II, prospective randomized therapeutic trial.
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