Purpose: To compare the clinical effects of radiofrequency (RF)-based microtenotomy and arthroscopic release of the extensor carpi radialis brevis (ECRB) tendon in patients with recalcitrant lateral epicondylitis through a prospective randomized controlled study. Methods: A total of 46 patients were randomly assigned to receive arthroscopic release (group A, 24 patients) or RF-based microtenotomy (group B, 22 patients). The visual analog scale (VAS) score for pain, flexion-extension arc, operation time, Disabilities of the Arm, Shoulder, and Hand questionnaire (DASH), Mayo Elbow Performance Score (MEPS), and grip power of groups A and B were compared during the recovery phases for up to 2 postoperative years. Results: Both groups showed statistically significant functional improvement compared with their preoperative grip strength and DASH, VAS, and MEPS scores at 2 years after surgery (P <.05). There were no differences in postoperative pain relief or functional restoration between the 2 groups during the recovery phases, however the mean operation time for group B (41.4 ± 5.2 minutes) was significantly shorter than that for group A (15.6 ± 3.6 minutes, P <.001). In group B, 1 patient underwent revision surgery due to postoperative ECRB rupture, and 1 patient in group A underwent open release for persistent postoperative discomfort. Conclusions: RF-based microtenotomy for treating recalcitrant lateral epicondylitis provided clinical outcomes comparable with those from arthroscopic release of ECRB tendon during the recovery phase. RF-based microtenotomy is considered as one of the surgical procedures for treating recalcitrant lateral epicondylitis, with the advantages of reliable elbow functional restoration and significantly shorter operation time. Level of Evidence: Level I, prospective randomized trial.
|Number of pages||8|
|Journal||Arthroscopy - Journal of Arthroscopic and Related Surgery|
|State||Published - May 2018|