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Journal of Sports Medicine
Volume 2016 (2016), Article ID 3498403, 11 pages
Review Article

Clinical Outcomes and Complications of Cortical Button Distal Biceps Repair: A Systematic Review of the Literature

1Department of Shoulder and Elbow Surgery, Patras University Hospital, Papanikolaou 1, 26504 Patras, Greece
2Medical School, University of Athens, Athens, Greece

Received 6 February 2016; Revised 16 April 2016; Accepted 22 June 2016

Academic Editor: Gabriel Y. F. Ng

Copyright © 2016 Andreas Panagopoulos et al. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.


Objectives. The purpose of the present study was to investigate the clinical outcomes and complications of the cortical button distal biceps fixation method. Material and Methods. All methods followed the PRISMA guidelines. Included studies had to describe clinical outcomes and complications after acute distal biceps repair with cortical button fixation. Eligibility criteria also included English language, more than 5 cases with minimum follow-up of 6 months, and preferably usage of at least one relevant clinical score (MEPS, ASES, and/or DASH) for final outcome. A loss of at least 30° in motion—flexion, extension, pronation, or supination—and a loss of at least 30% of strength were considered an unsatisfactory result. Results. The review identified 7 articles including 105 patients (mean age 43.6 years) with 106 acute distal biceps ruptures. Mean follow-up was 26.3 months. Functional outcome of ROM regarding flexion/extension and pronation/supination was satisfactory in 94 (89.5%) and 86 (82%) patients in respect. Averaged flexion and supination strength had been reported in 6/7 studies (97 patients) and were satisfactory in 82.4% of them. The most common complication was transient nerve palsy (14.2%). The overall reoperation rate was 4.8% (5/105 cases). Conclusion. Cortical button fixation for acute distal biceps repair is a reproducible operation with good clinical results. Most of the complications can be avoided with appropriate surgical technique.