Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Health economics study highlights long-term benefits of rotator cuff surgery

Date:
November 20, 2013
Source:
American Academy of Orthopaedic Surgeons
Summary:
Each year, close to two million people in the United States visit their doctor for shoulder pain. One study examines the long-term benefits of rotator cuff surgery.

Each year, close to 2 million people in the United States visit their doctor for shoulder pain associated with a rotator cuff injury. Approximately one-third of rotator cuff tears will require surgery, with the remaining injuries benefiting from nonsurgical treatment including pain medication and rehabilitation exercises. To help physicians determine the best treatment for each patient, the American Academy of Orthopaedic Surgeons (AAOS) recently released Appropriate Use Criteria (AUC)covering five different treatments for rotator cuff injuries.

For patients who do require surgery, a new study published today in the Journal of Bone and Joint Surgery (JBJS)suggests surgical treatment for rotator cuff tears reduces indirect costs, including ability to work and fewer missed work days. The authors of "The Societal and Economic Value of Rotator Cuff Repair," estimate these surgeries result in a lifetime societal savings in the U.S. of approximately $3.44 billion annually.

"A torn rotator cuff will weaken your shoulder and may make daily activities painful and more difficult, but the decision-making process as to when surgery is warranted is not always black and white," said Richard C. Mather, MD, assistant professor, department of orthopaedic surgery at Duke University Medical Center and a study author. "This study and the new appropriate use criteria add tools for both patients and physicians to inform and improve their care both in the short and long terms."

Despite tearing their rotator cuffs, Wesley Lintonand Michaela "Pinky" Punoare able to keep doing what they love, work and support their families. Linton, a firefighter in Winston Salem, North Carolina, can rescue victims from fires, complete 50 push-ups with no pain and lift patients needing assistance. Puno, an amateur ballroom dancer, can continue improving her technique, practice two hours a day and dance competitively. Both patients are able to live full lives thanks to the rotator cuff surgery they had to ease their shoulder pain.

The prevalence of rotator cuff tears increases with age and yet, many people desire to stay in the workforce longer, which makes examining the cost-savings of rotator cuff surgeries an important issue. The new study offers a comprehensive look at the societal impact of rotator cuff disease and its treatments. Comparing surgical and non-surgical treatment options, the study's investigators found rotator cuff repair is cost effective across all patient age groups. Additionally, societal savings offset the direct costs of treatment in patients younger than age 61, resulting in an average net savings to society of $13,771 per patient. This number significantly increased to $77,662 for patients younger than 40 years.

"Rotator cuff injuries can affect anyone, but risk increases with age. The societal burden of rotator cuff tears is potentially significant, considering their impact on people's ability to work and remain productive,"said Lane Koenig, health economist at KNG Health Consulting and a study author. "Fortunately, what this research enables us to do is quantify this value. It truly offers a new perspective to the body of information available about this condition."

To conduct the study, researchers reviewed literature and Medicare claims data. The collected data were applied to a Markov Decision Model where they estimated lifetime direct and indirect costs associated with surgical and continued non-operative treatment for rotator cuff tears by comparing costs for probability of employment, household income, missed workdays and disability payments among patients ages 30-80.Additionally, AAOS developed appropriate use criteria for rotator cuff injuries to help clinicians identify when surgery is appropriate for each patient.


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by American Academy of Orthopaedic Surgeons. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Journal Reference:

  1. Richard C. Mather, Lane Koenig, Daniel Acevedo, Timothy M. Dall, Paul Gallo, Anthony Romeo, John Tongue, Gerald Williams. The Societal and Economic Value of Rotator Cuff Repair. The Journal of Bone and Joint Surgery (American), 2013; 95 (22): 1993 DOI: 10.2106/JBJS.L.01495

Cite This Page:

American Academy of Orthopaedic Surgeons. "Health economics study highlights long-term benefits of rotator cuff surgery." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 20 November 2013. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2013/11/131120143750.htm>.
American Academy of Orthopaedic Surgeons. (2013, November 20). Health economics study highlights long-term benefits of rotator cuff surgery. ScienceDaily. Retrieved April 18, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2013/11/131120143750.htm
American Academy of Orthopaedic Surgeons. "Health economics study highlights long-term benefits of rotator cuff surgery." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2013/11/131120143750.htm (accessed April 18, 2014).

Share This



More Health & Medicine News

Friday, April 18, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

'Holy Grail' Of Weight Loss? New Find Could Be It

'Holy Grail' Of Weight Loss? New Find Could Be It

Newsy (Apr. 18, 2014) In a potential breakthrough for future obesity treatments, scientists have used MRI scans to pinpoint brown fat in a living adult for the first time. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Scientists Create Stem Cells From Adult Skin Cells

Scientists Create Stem Cells From Adult Skin Cells

Newsy (Apr. 17, 2014) The breakthrough could mean a cure for some serious diseases and even the possibility of human cloning, but it's all still a way off. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Obama: 8 Million Healthcare Signups

Obama: 8 Million Healthcare Signups

AP (Apr. 17, 2014) President Barack Obama gave a briefing Thursday announcing 8 million people have signed up under the Affordable Care Act. He blasted continued Republican efforts to repeal the law. (April 17) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Is Apathy A Sign Of A Shrinking Brain?

Is Apathy A Sign Of A Shrinking Brain?

Newsy (Apr. 17, 2014) A recent study links apathetic feelings to a smaller brain. Researchers say the results indicate a need for apathy screening for at-risk seniors. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:

Breaking News:
from the past week

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

Environment News

Technology News



Save/Print:
Share:

Free Subscriptions


Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

Get Social & Mobile


Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

Have Feedback?


Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
Mobile: iPhone Android Web
Follow: Facebook Twitter Google+
Subscribe: RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins