Key words Anterior cruciate
Springer Online Journal Archives 1860-2000
Abstract Forty patients with an acute complete tear of the anterior cruciate ligament (ACL) underwent primary reconstruction with an iliotibial band autograft after median 15 (range 0–90) days. Objective and functional evaluation was performed after median 37 (range 24–87) months by two independent observers using the International Knee Documentation Committee (IKDC) knee evaluation form, the Lysholm knee function score, and the Tegner activity score. During the observation period 5 patients sustained an ACL tear in the contralateral knee, and 1 patient (2.5%) sustained a graft rupture and underwent re-reconstruction. For the remaining 34 knees the Lysholm score at follow-up was median 100 (range 84–100, mean 97 [± 4]), all patients scoring excellent (n = 28) or good (n = 6). Three patients (9%) had more than 3 mm side-to-side difference in anteroposterior laxity. All 4 ligament failures occurred in patients operated on within the first 2 weeks after the injury. Twenty-six patients (76%) returned to the same level of activity as prior to the injury. Of 8 who dropped to a lower activity level, only one ascribed this to problems with the operated knee, meaning that 26 of 27 (96%) returned to their desired level of activity. According to the overall IKDC evaluation, 14 patients (40%) had a normal knee (A), 13 (37%) had a nearly normal knee (B), 5 (14%) had an abnormal knee (C), and 2 (9%) had a severely abnormal knee (D). Ten patients (25%) had the staples removed due to local irritation, and further 6 (15%) had local symptoms from the tibial staples. The harvest site gave 8 (20%) patients cosmetic complaints, but all graded this as slight, and 3 (8%) had slight pain during activity from the lateral muscular hernia. In selected individuals performing vigorous knee activities, autologous reconstruction of acute ACL disrupted knees with a combined internal and external iliotibial band transfer demonstrates excellent results after median 3 years. The failure rate is comparable to other techniques.
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