Features to Predict Success with Nonoperative Treatment of Rotator Cuff Tears

Approximately 400 patients with full-thickness rotator cuff tears were enrolled in this study. Patients were asked to do six to twelve weeks of therapy. Patients were allowed to do the therapy program with a therapist or at home with a booklet and DVD.

This study demonstrated that a physical therapy program derived from a systematic review or the literature (Kuhn JSES 2009), was effective in more than 85% of patients. Patients who fail this therapy program, generally do so in the first 12 weeks of treatment. The beneficial effects seem to last at least 2 years.


We would like to thank the following funding agencies for supporting this research:

  • Arthrex Corporation-Unrestricted Research Gift
  • NFL Charities- Medical Research Grant
  • NIH-Grant Number 5 K23 AR052392-05 from the National Institute of Arthritis and Musculoskeletal and Skin Diseases
  • AOSSM Career Development Award

Support Staff
We are extremely thankful to the support staff at each site for making this study possible.

MOON Shoulder Sites Participating in "The MOON Shoulder Study"

Orthopedic InstituteUniversity IowaUniversity of Colorado Vanderbilt UnversityKnoxville Orthopaedic ClinicUniversity of California at San FranciscoOhio State UniversityWashington University in St. LouisHospital for Special Surgery

Questions about the MOON Shoulder Group contact Rosemary Sanders at Vanderbilt University Medical Center: Rosemary.A.Sanders@VUMC.org