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Encyclopedia > Anterior cruciate ligament injury
Diagram of the right knee
Diagram of the right knee
Gray's Fig. 347 - Right knee-joint, from the front, showing interior ligaments.
Gray's Fig. 348 - Left knee-joint from behind, showing interior ligaments.
Gray's Fig. 348 - Left knee-joint from behind, showing interior ligaments.

Non-contact tears or ruptures are the most common cause of injury to the anterior cruciate ligament. They often occur when athletes decelerate rapidly, followed by a sharp or sudden change in direction (cutting). In jump sports, ACL failure has been linked to heavy or stiff landing as well as twisting or turning the knee while landing, especially when the knee is in the "valgus" ("knock-knee") position. Studies indicate that women in jumping and cutting sports such as basketball, competitive badminton, volleyball, or football (soccer), are significantly more prone to ACL injuries than men; this is generally believed to be due to differences between the sexes in knee joint anatomy such as the intercondylar notch and/or ligament size and strength, ligament laxity, general muscular strength, reaction time of muscle contraction and coordination, and possibly training techniques (a new study suggests hormone-induced changes in muscle tension associated with menstrual cycles may be an important factor [1]). Others have shown that high risk knee loads large enough to injure the ACL stem primarily from the hip [2]. Women athletes are being taught safer jumping and landing techniques to better protect them from cruciate injury [3]. Download high resolution version (800x729, 63 KB)Knee. ... Download high resolution version (800x729, 63 KB)Knee. ... Image File history File links Gray347. ... Image File history File links Gray347. ... An illustration from the 1918 edition Henry Grays Anatomy of the Human Body, commonly known as Grays Anatomy, is an anatomy textbook widely regarded as a classic work on human anatomy. ... Image File history File links Gray348. ... Image File history File links Gray348. ... An illustration from the 1918 edition Henry Grays Anatomy of the Human Body, commonly known as Grays Anatomy, is an anatomy textbook widely regarded as a classic work on human anatomy. ... The anterior cruciate ligament (or ACL) is one of the four major ligaments of the knee. ... Sara Giauro shoots a three-point shot, FIBA Europe Cup for Women Finals 2005. ... The Danish Olympic badminton player Peter Gade Badminton is a racquet sport played by either two opposing players (singles) or two opposing pairs (doubles). ... Volleyball is an Olympic sport in which two teams separated by a high net use their hands, arms, or (rarely) other parts of their bodies to hit a ball back and forth over the net. ... Football (soccer) - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia /**/ @import /skins-1. ...


Damage to the ACL also occurs with lateral blows to the knee (as happens with a tackle from the side in American football) and often is accompanied by injuries to the medial collateral ligament (MCL) and the medial meniscus, which is attached to the MCL; physicians are taught "...knee injuries come in threes - anterior cruciate, medial collateral, medial meniscus." Clinical studies, however, have noted that a lateral meniscal tear occurs more commonly than the classic "terrible triad" noted previously[4]. A damaged ACL can be confirmed (clinically) by a physician with the anterior drawer test, the Lachman test, or an MRI. United States simply as football, is a competitive team sport that is both fast-paced and strategic. ... Diagram of the knee The medial collateral ligament (or MCL) is one of the four major ligaments of the knee. ... The medial meniscus (internal semilunar fibrocartilage) is nearly semicircular in form, a little elongated from before backward, and broader behind than in front; its anterior end, thin and pointed, is attached to the anterior intercondyloid fossa of the tibia, in front of the anterior cruciate ligament; its posterior end is... The drawer test is a test used by doctors to detect rupture of the cruciate ligaments in the knee. ... A Lachman test is a medical test used for examining the ACL (Anterior Cruciate Ligament) in the knee for patients where there is a suspicion of a torn ACL. To do this, lie the patient supine on a bed. ... The mri are a fictional alien species in the Faded Sun Trilogy of C.J. Cherryh. ...


It is one of the most common serious injuries in Association Football (Soccer) and Australian rules football. ACL injuries are also common in alpine skiing, partially because of improvements in boots. Today's boots have been successful in preventing many of the ankle and leg fractures once caused by accidents; however, the tradeoff has been that the stresses have been transferred to the knees, resulting in many ACL tears. The striker (wearing red jersey) has run past the defender (in white jersey) and is about to take a shot at the goal, while the goalkeeper positions himself to stop the ball. ... The Big Men Fly - high marking is a key skill and spectator attribute of Aussie Rules Precise field and goal kicking using the oval shaped ball is the most important skill in Aussie Rules Footy Australian football, also known as Australian rules football, Aussie rules, or simply football or footy... Alpine skiing (or downhill skiing) is a recreational activity and sport involving sliding down snow-covered hills with long, thin skis attached to each foot. ...


Symptoms of an ACL injury include the hearing of a sudden popping sound at the time of the injury, swelling, and instability of the knee (i.e., a "wobbly" feeling or a feeling that the knee is not solid). ACL injury is sometimes misdiagnosed as a "knee sprain" by primary care physicians, athletic trainers, or coaches. But the "pop" sound is highly diagnostic for ACL injury. Patients who have experienced this symptom and who are told it is a "sprain" should seek a second opinion. Continued athletic activity on a knee with an ACL injury can have devastating consequences, resulting in massive cartilage damage, which is likely to lead to osteoarthritis later in life.


An ACL injury can often be debilitating for far longer than a broken leg.

Contents

Treatment

A partially torn ACL will usually be allowed to heal itself. A completely torn ACL will not grow back, probably because the lack of blood supply near the ACL. It must be replaced by surgery or left unattached. The ACL primarily serves to stabilize the knee in an extended position and when surrounding muscles are relaxed, so if the muscles are strong, many people can function without it. The term for non-surgical treatment for ACL rupture is "conservative management", and it often includes physical therapy and use of a knee brace. Lack of an ACL generally increases the risk of other knee injuries such as torn meniscus, so sports with cutting and twisting motions are not recommended. For patients who frequently participate in such sports, surgery is often recommended.


ACL surgery

There are two main options for ACL graft selection(see ACL reconstruction), Allograft and autograft. Autograft are the patients own tissues, and options include the hamstring tendons or middle third of the patella tendon. Allograft is cadaveric tissue sourced from a tissue bank. Each method has its own pros and cons, hamstring and middle third of patella tendon having similar outcomes. Patellar grafts are often incorrectly cited as being stronger, but the site of the harvest is often extremely painful for weeks after surgery and some patients develop chronic patellar tendinitis. Replacement via a posthumous donor involves a slightly higher risk of infection. Additionally, donor grafts eliminate tendon harvesting which, due to improved arthroscopic methods, is responsible for most post-operative pain.


The surgery is typically undertaken arthroscopically, with tunnels drilled into the femur and tibia at approximately the original ACL attachments. The graft is then placed into position and held in place. There are a variety of fixation devices available, particularily for hamstring tendon fixation. These include screws, buttons and post fixation devices. The graft typically attaches to the bone within 6-8 weeks. The original collagen tissue in the graft acts as a scaffold and new collagen tissue is laid down in the graft with time. Hence the graft takes over 6 months to reach maximal strength.



After surgery, the knee joint loses flexibility, and the muscles around the knee tend to atrophy. All treatment options require extensive physical therapy to build up muscle strength around the knee and restore range of motion. For many active patients, the lengthy rehabilitation period is more difficult to deal with than the actual surgery. External bracing is recommended for athletes in contact and collision sports for a period of time after reconstruction. Whether the ACL deficient knee is reconstructed or not, the patient is susceptible to early onset of chronic degenerative joint disease. Atrophy is the partial or complete wasting away of a part of the body. ...


See also

The anterior cruciate ligament (or ACL) is one of the four major ligaments of the knee. ... Deep powder skiing An alpine skier Members of the US Air Force skiing (and snowboarding) at Keystone Resorts 14th Annual SnoFest Skiing is the activity of gliding over snow using skis (originally wooden planks, now usually made from fiberglass or related composites), with metal edges, strapped to the feet... ACL reconstruction (anterior cruciate ligament reconstruction) is surgical repair of a torn anterior cruciate ligament in the knee. ... Sports injuries are injuries that are caused by participation in a sporting event. ...

External links

  • Vermont Safety Research - Tips for knee friendly skiing

 
 

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