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Lessons to be learnt from the study ‘Sham surgery versus labral repair or biceps tenodesis for type II SLAP lesions of the shoulder: a three-armed randomised clinical trial’
  1. Ann M Cools,
  2. Dorien Borms
  1. Department of Rehabilitation Sciences and Physiotherapy, Ghent University, Gent, Belgium
  1. Correspondence to Professor Ann M Cools, Ghent University, Rehabilitation Sciences and Physiotherapy, Gent, 9000, Belgium; ann.cools{at}

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‘Real surgery is no better than sham surgery in isolated type II SLAP lesions’. That is the first interpretation the reader may make based on the study published by Schröder et al in BJSM. 1 First, let us congratulate the authors for conducting such a well-designed study on a large sample of patients, with a research question that is extremely relevant to patients and to payers.

Superior labral tear from anterior to posterior(SLAP) lesions have been much written about and likely been overdiagnosed and overtreated.2 Numerous papers presented new diagnostic tests3 and postoperative outcome after SLAP repairs,4 and a few studies explored the benefit of conservative, non-operative treatment.5–7

Sham surgery proves as successful as real surgery

Schröder and colleagues show that surgery consisting of labral repair or biceps tenodesis provides no benefit over sham surgery for isolated type II SLAP lesions. Although the study was …

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  • Competing interests None declared.

  • Provenance and peer review Commissioned; externally peer reviewed.

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