Study Title:

Association between alcohol consumption and rotator cuff tear.

Study Abstract

Background and purpose: Long-term alcohol intake is associated with various negative effects on capillary microcirculation and tissue perfusion. We hypothesized that alcohol consumption might be a risk factor for both the occurrence and the severity of rotator cuff tears (RCTs).

Patients and methods: A case-control study was performed. We studied 249 consecutive patients (139 men and 110 women; mean age 64 (54-78) years) who underwent arthroscopic rotator cuff repair. Tear size was determined intraoperatively. The control group had 356 subjects (186 men and 170 women; mean age 66 (58-82) years) with no RCT. All participants were questioned about their alcohol intake. Participants were divided into: (1) non-drinkers if they consumed less than 0.01 g of ethanol per day, and (2) moderate drinkers and (3) excessive drinkers if women (men) consumed > 24 g (36 g) per day for at least 2 years.

Results: Total alcohol consumption, wine consumption, and duration of alcohol intake were higher in both men and women with RCT than in both men and women in the control group. Excessive alcohol consumption was found to be a risk factor for the occurrence of RCT in both sexes (men: OR = 1.7, 95% CI: 1.2-3.9; women: OR = 1.9, 95% CI: 0.94-4.1). Massive tears were associated with a higher intake of alcohol (especially wine) than smaller lesions.

Interpretation: Long-term alcohol intake is a significant risk factor for the occurrence and severity of rotator cuff tear in both sexes.

Study Information

Acta Orthop. 2016;87(2):165-8. doi: 10.3109/17453674.2015.1119599. Epub 2015 Nov 26. Erratum in: Acta Orthop. 2016 Oct;87(5):538. PMID: 26610042; PMCID: PMC4812079.

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