The UKUFF trial (funded by the NIHR Health Technology Assessment Programme) is a multi-centre randomised controlled trial to measure the clinical and cost effectiveness of different types of management of rotator cuff repairs. The Nuffield Department of Orthopaedic Surgery (NDOS) at the University of Oxford co-ordinates the trial in collaboration with CHaRT.
The rotator cuff is a group of muscles that control movements within the shoulder. Tears of the rotator cuff are one of the most common causes of shoulder pain and dysfunction. The clinical evidence available regarding the natural history and the treatment of rotator cuff tears is limited and conflicting. The UKUFF trial (funded by the NIHR Health Technology Assessment Programme) was a multi-centre randomised controlled trial to measure the clinical and cost effectiveness of different types of management of rotator cuff repairs. In early 2010 the UKUFF trial was reconfigured to compare the effectiveness of arthroscopic repair (where the tear is repaired through key-hole surgery) against open repair of the rotator cuff (involving a longer skin incision to undertake the procedure under direct vision). The primary outcome was Oxford Shoulder Score (OSS), two years post-surgery.
The mean OSS improved in both groups. At two years, there was no statistically significant difference in OSS between the groups (difference -0.76; 95% confidence interval -2.75 to 1.22; p=0.452). Rates of re-tear were high in both groups; but there was no statistically significant difference between groups. Use and cost of resources were similar between arthroscopic and open management in the trial; as was quality of life. There was uncertainty about which strategy was most cost-effective.
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Carr A1, Cooper C1, Campbell MK2, Rees J1, Moser J3, Beard DJ1, Fitzpatrick R4, Gray A4, Dawson J5, Murphy J5, Bruhn H2, Cooper D2, Ramsay C2. Bone Joint J. Effectiveness of open and arthroscopic rotator cuff repair (UKUFF): a randomised controlled trial. 2017 Jan;99-B(1):107-115. doi: 10.1302/0301-620X.99B1.BJJ-2016-0424.R1
Murphy J1, Gray A1, Cooper C2, Cooper D3, Ramsay C3, Carr A2. Costs, quality of life and cost-effectiveness of arthroscopic and open repair for rotator cuff tears: an economic evaluation alongside the UKUFF trial. Bone Joint J. 2016 Dec;98-B(12):1648-1655.