Research ArticlesThe Effects of Smoking on Shoulder Stiffness Following Arthroscopic Rotator Cuff RepairPapadopoulos, Nicholas A. BMed, MD; Lam, Patrick H. PhD; Murrell, George A.C. MD, DPhilAuthor Information Sports Medicine and Shoulder Service, Department of Orthopaedic Surgery, St George Hospital, University of New South Wales, Sydney, NSW, Australia The authors declare no conflict of interest. Reprints: George A.C. Murrell, MD, DPhil, Orthopaedic Research Institute, Kogarah, Sydney, NSW 2217, Australia (e-mail: [email protected]). Techniques in Shoulder & Elbow Surgery: September 2018 - Volume 19 - Issue 3 - p 111-117 doi: 10.1097/BTE.0000000000000146 Buy Metrics Abstract We hypothesize that cigarette smoking might predispose patients to the development of shoulder stiffness as a postoperative complication of arthroscopic rotator cuff repair within the first 3 months of operative intervention. To our knowledge this association has not been evaluated before. The study was a prospective study undertaken on a consecutive cohort of 80 patients who underwent arthroscopic rotator cuff repair at a single center. Measurements of passive range of motion, patient-ranked pain and stiffness levels, as well as strength were collected preoperatively and at 1, 6, and 12 weeks postoperatively. Patient smoking habits were assessed at the time of their 6-week postoperative review. Correlation analysis demonstrated a relationship between smoking status and patient-ranked shoulder stiffness 1 week following arthroscopic rotator cuff repair (r=0.26, P=0.046). Smoking status also correlated with the change in shoulder stiffness experienced by smokers at 1 week (r=0.37, P=0.03) and was found to be associated with a reduced restoration of external rotation range of motion between 6 and 12 weeks following arthroscopic intervention (r=−0.32, P=0.014). Relationships exist between cigarette smoking, patient reported shoulder stiffness and an objective loss of range of motion within 12 weeks of arthroscopic rotator cuff repair. Copyright © 2018 Wolters Kluwer Health, Inc. All rights reserved.