Systematic Reviews
Copyright ©The Author(s) 2017. Published by Baishideng Publishing Group Inc. All rights reserved.
World J Orthop. May 18, 2017; 8(5): 424-430
Published online May 18, 2017. doi: 10.5312/wjo.v8.i5.424
Surgery for calcifying tendinitis of the shoulder: A systematic review
Freek U Verstraelen, Eric Fievez, Loes Janssen, Wim Morrenhof
Freek U Verstraelen, Eric Fievez, Loes Janssen, Wim Morrenhof, Viecuri Medical Centre, 5912 BL Venlo, the Netherlands
Author contributions: Verstraelen FU, Fievez E, Janssen L and Morrenhof W contributed substantially to the work; Morrenhof W conceptualized and designed the review together with Verstraelen FU and Janssen L; Verstraelen FU and Fievez E carried out the data extraction and analysis; Verstraelen FU drafted the initial manuscript; all authors concisely reviewed and approved the final manuscript as submitted.
Conflict-of-interest statement: None.
Data sharing statement: The technical appendix and dataset are available from the corresponding author at
Open-Access: This article is an open-access article which was selected by an in-house editor and fully peer-reviewed by external reviewers. It is distributed in accordance with the Creative Commons Attribution Non Commercial (CC BY-NC 4.0) license, which permits others to distribute, remix, adapt, build upon this work non-commercially, and license their derivative works on different terms, provided the original work is properly cited and the use is non-commercial. See:
Correspondence to: Freek U Verstraelen, MSc, Viecuri Medical Centre, Tegelseweg 210, 5912 BL Venlo, the Netherlands.
Telephone: +31-77-3205555
Received: October 9, 2016
Peer-review started: October 10, 2016
First decision: November 11, 2016
Revised: January 3, 2017
Accepted: February 8, 2017
Article in press: February 13, 2017
Published online: May 18, 2017

To systematically search literature and determine a preferable surgical procedure in patients with failed conservative treatment of calcifying tendinitis of the shoulder.


The electronic online databases MEDLINE (through PubMed), EMBASE (through OVID), CINAHL (through EB- SCO), Web of Science and Cochrane Central Register of Controlled Trials were systematically searched in May 2016. Eligible for inclusion were all available studies with level II and level III evidence (LoE). Data was assessed and extracted by two independent review authors using a specifically for this study designed data extraction form.


Six studies (294 surgically treated shoulders) were included in this review. No significant differences between the three available treatment options (acromioplasty with the removal of the calcific deposits, acromioplasty or solely the removal of the calcific deposits) were detected regarding the functional and clinical outcome. The follow-up ranged from 12 mo to 5 years. Complication rates were low. No reoperations were necessary and the only reported complication was adhesive capsulitis, which in all cases could be treated conservatively with full recovery.


We found that all three available treatment options show good functional and clinical outcomes in the short and midterm. However, a favorable procedure is difficult to determine due to the lack of high-quality comparing studies.

Keywords: Calcifying tendinitis, Surgery, Systematic review, Acromioplasty, Debridement

Core tip: All three available surgical treatment options (acromioplasty with the removal of the calcific deposits, acromioplasty or solely the removal of the calcific deposits) show good functional and clinical results and low complication rates. However, more high-quality comparative research is needed to appoint a preferential procedure.