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Higher fasting plasma glucose levels within the normoglycaemic range and rotator cuff tears
  1. U G Longo1,
  2. F Franceschi1,
  3. L Ruzzini1,
  4. F Spiezia1,
  5. N Maffulli2,
  6. V Denaro1
  1. 1
    Department of Orthopaedic and Trauma Surgery, Campus Biomedico University, Rome, Italy
  2. 2
    Keele University School of Medicine, Keele, UK
  1. Nicola Maffulli, Centre for Sports and Exercise Medicine, Queen Mary University of London, Barts and The London School of Medicine and Dentistry, London, England; n.maffulli{at}


Objective: To determine the plasma glucose levels in non-diabetic patients with rotator cuff tear.

Design: Frequency-matched case–control study.

Setting: University Teaching Hospital.

Participants: The study included 194 subjects who were operated on at our institution. Group 1 included 97 consecutive patients (36 men and 61 women; mean age: 62.9 years, range 37 to 82) who underwent arthroscopic repair of a rotator cuff tear in 2007 and 2008. Group 2 (control group) included 97 patients (36 men and 61 women; mean age: 61.6 years, range 36 to 80) who underwent arthroscopic meniscectomy for a meniscal tear in the same period, and had no evidence of shoulder pathology. These patients were frequency-matched by age (within 3 years) and gender with patients of Group 1.

Main outcome measure: Measurement of fasting plasma glucose levels.

Results: Patients with rotator cuff tears (Group 1) showed statistically significantly higher fasting plasma glucose levels within the normoglycaemic range (p = 0.007) than patients with meniscal tear (Group 2).

Conclusions: The present study suggests that normal, but in the high range of normal, increasing plasma glucose levels may be a risk factor for rotator cuff tear. An enhanced understanding of these factors holds the promise of new approaches to the prevention and management of rotator cuff tears.

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  • Competing interests: None.

  • Ethics approval: All procedures described in this study were approved by the Ethics Committee of our Institution.

  • Contributors: All authors made substantial contributions to the intellectual content of the manuscript and have all approved the final version. FF, UGL, NM and VD conceived the study. UGL, LR and SF performed the review of the literature and wrote the initial draft.

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