Question:I am having surgery to repair a torn rotator cuff in my shoulder. The doctor has described using an anchor to "button down" the torn tendon. How does this work?
Some doctors are doing rotator cuff repair using an anchoring or fixation device. These devices can be made of biodegradable plastic or metal, or they can be made of bone that has been treated and shaped for this purpose.
The surgeon drills a hole through a large bump on the shoulder bone. The graft is threaded through the hole and then threaded sideways to lock against the bone. The frayed or torn edges of the rotator cuff are then attached to this anchor.
When the anchor is made of bone, it blends in with the natural bone within six months. Biodegradable materials gradually dissolve and become part of the bone over the same period of time.
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