ACL rupture

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anterior cruciate ligament rupture

Anterior cruciate ligament (ACL) is an important stabilizer of the knee.

  • it act as the primary constraint preventing anterior displacement of the tibia on the femur
  • it stabilises the knee during rotational and valgus stresses (1)

Rupture of ACL is a common sports injury and is seen in young actives people (1,2)

  • around 70% of injuries occur in people who participate in sports (2) 
  • awkward landing or a pivot with twisting of the knee are the typical causes for injury
  • reported incidence of ACL is estimated to be 0.38 per 100,000 individuals (1)
  • in high risk population (e.g. - recreational skiers) the risk is much higher (around 1 in every 2000 adult skier visits)
  • risk of ACL tear is greater in females than in males
    • the risk of rupture is 4 times higher in female high school basketball and volleyball players than in age and sports matched males (2)

ACL tears are specially important since instability of the knee may result in intraarticular damage (specially menisceal tears) and increase risk of secondary osteoarthiris occurring years after the injury if not properly managed.

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Last reviewed 01/2018

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