Distal biceps tendon repair: Comparison of surgical techniques


      Purpose: Various surgical repair techniques for distal biceps tendon ruptures have been reported, however, the optimal technique is unknown. Methods: Over a 4-year period 19 distal biceps tendon ruptures were repaired: 9 using a single anterior incision and 10 using a modified 2-incision Boyd and Anderson technique. The patients were followed-up prospectively and independently reviewed. Results: Patient-rated elbow evaluation and Short Form-36 (SF-36) scores improved with time independent of surgical technique. At 1 year the 1-incision group regained more flexion (142.8° vs 131.1°) than the 2-incision group. There was no difference between groups in supination motion, supination strength, or flexion strength, although recovery of flexion strength was initially more rapid for the 2-incision group. Complications were encountered in 44% of cases treated with a 1-incision technique and in 10% of cases treated with the 2-incision technique; however, most of these were minor transient paresthesias. Conclusions: The differences between the 2 groups were relatively minor with the Morrey 2-incision technique showing a slightly more rapid recovery of flexion strength and fewer complications as compared with the 1-incision technique. (J Hand Surg 2003;28A:496-502. Copyright © 2003 by the American Society for Surgery of the Hand.)


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