K. Mathew Warnock, MD Performs New Reconstruction Surgery on Irreparable Rotator Cuff Tears

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K. Mathew Warnock, MD, of Houston, performs a revolutionary procedure for patients with irreparable rotator cuff tendons. It is Superior Capsular Reconstruction Surgery, and the results are impressive.

"The early results suggest that this reconstruction technique is a useful alternative treatment for irreparable rotator cuff tears," said Dr. Warnock, a board certified surgeon by the American Board of Orthopedic Surgery

K. Mathew Warnock, MD, of Houston, is performing a new surgical procedure for patients with irreparable rotator cuff tears. The procedure is called Superior Capsular Reconstruction (SCR), and recent studies show that it restores stability and function to shoulder joints with irreparable tears of the rotator cuff tendon.

SCR restores stability of the hi real head. Patients experience marked improvements in shoulder strength, functions, and pain relief with few early complications. Out of the first twenty-two patients who underwent SCR, muscle strength significantly improved. Eight of these patients were manual workers, and they were able to return to their jobs because of the procedure.

"The early results suggest that this reconstruction technique is a useful alternative treatment for irreparable rotator cuff tears," said Dr. Warnock, a board certified surgeon by the American Board of Orthopedic Surgery and a member of the American Academy of Orthopedic Surgeons. "This procedure could be a life changing treatment for those dealing with the pain and loss of shoulder function from a severely torn or irreparable rotator cuff tendon."

Shoulder movement is primarily controlled by the rotator cuff, which is comprised of four tendons wrapped around the ball, or humeral head. In addition to controlling motion, the rotator cuff also keeps the humeral head in its socket, or glenoid. Individuals suffering from large or irreparable tears of the shoulder's rotator cuff tendons often lose their ability to raise or move the shoulder, and any movement that remains can be extremely painful.

In these cases, large tears in the rotator cuff tendon have left the humeral head exposed, which leads to its upward migration within the glenoid and can cause rubbing on the undersurface of the acromion. When the tendons cannot be repaired and the humeral head cannot be returned to its proper position, surgeons classify the tendon tears as an irreparable rotator cuff tear.

SCR was pioneered in 2007 specifically for patients with irreparable rotator cuff tears. According to surgeons, the procedure holds the humeral head of the shoulder in the glenoid, enabling the shoulder and arm to function more normally.

In the procedure, allograft tissues are placed in the area where the torn rotator cuff tendons were located. This form of patch graft surgery can stabilize and reinforce the shoulder joint, restore function and strength of the arm and can reduce or eliminate pain altogether.

SCR is performed arthroscopically, and bioabsorbable suture anchors are used to complete the procedure. Previously, such grafts have been used in traditional rotator cuff repairs where the marginal quality of very thin tissues is involved. SCR grafts are very robust at 3.5 mm thick and are used to cover the humeral head and help keep the shoulder joint in proper position.

According to The Journal of Arthroscopic and Related Surgery, biomechanical studies have shown that SCR "completely restored the superior stability of a simulated irreparable rotator cuff tear." Another recent study of SCR reported no progression of osteoarthritis or rotator cuff muscle atrophy.

For more information on Superior Capsule Reconstruction Surgery, please visit warnockmd.com or call (281) 807-4380. K. Mathew Warnock, MD's clinic is located at 18220 State Highway 249, Suite 330, Houston, TX 77070.

K. Mathew Warnock, MD performs orthopedic research and often presents at national orthopedic meetings. He is Board Certified in Orthopedic Surgery and is a member of the American Academy of Orthopedic Surgeons. Dr. Warnock is affiliated with the following hospitals: Methodist Willowbrook Hospital, Texas Orthopedic Hospital, North Cypress Medical Center, Tomball Regional Medical Center, Cypress Fairbanks Medical Center Hospital, Cy-Fair Surgery Center and St. Luke’s Hospital at The Vintage.

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