SLAP repair and bicep tenodesis: a comparison of utilization and revision rates for SLAP tears

Document Type

Journal Article

Publication Date



JSES international








Age; Biceps tenodesis; Revision surgery; SLAP repair; SLAP tear


HYPOTHESIS: The management of superior labrum anterior to posterior (SLAP) tears typically consists of either repair or biceps tenodesis (BT). While repair is more frequently recommended in younger patients, patients older than 40 years are often treated with BT. The purpose of this study is to determine whether there has been a change in utilization of these procedures over the past decade with respect to patient age as well as compare reoperation rates between the two procedures. METHODS: The Pearldiver database was queried to identify BT and SLAP repairs indicated for SLAP tears performed from 2010 to 2019. The primary outcome was utilization rate, stratified by age. A secondary outcome was 2-year shoulder reoperation rates. Trends were reported in terms of compounded annual growth rate. Outcome analysis was conducted using univariate and multivariable analysis. RESULTS: From 2010 to 2019, SLAP repair was the most common procedure performed for SLAP tears. Regardless of age, BT performed for SLAP tear had a significantly increased utilization rate; whereas, SLAP repair had a significantly decreased utilization rate. SLAP repair was more commonly performed in younger patients compared to BT. Following multivariable analysis, patients who underwent SLAP repair had significantly higher odds (odds ratio (OR): 1.453; 95% confidence interval (CI): 1.26-1.68; < .001) of requiring an arthroscopic reoperation within 2 years when compared to those who underwent BT with no significant difference with respect to 2-year open reoperation. CONCLUSION: Although SLAP repair is still more commonly used to treat SLAP tears than BT, especially for younger patients, the utilization of SLAP repair is decreasing while BT is increasing. The increased utilization of BT may be associated with lower rates of shoulder reoperation for problematic SLAP tears.


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