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Sports Medicine Knee Injury News

Posted by floriza in Sports Medicine

A study conducted at La Trobe University in Victoria, Australia and published in the American Journal of Sports Medicine shows that many people who have knee reconstruction surgery cannot perform sports activities as well as before the surgery.

The study included 300 men and women who were surveyed two to seven years following their surgery. Of the 208 people who continued playing their sport, 68 reported that their performance level was reduced after the surgery. One-third of the study participants who had knee surgery did not play sports anymore at all after their surgery.

The reasons they did not return to their sport were not surveyed. Whether performance difficulties were at fault, fear of re-injury, or other personal reasons were involved is unknown.

The ACL and the Meniscus

The surgery performed in the study was ACL reconstruction. The ACL, or anterior cruciate ligament, is located on the inside portion of the knee joint and is a common ligament to tear. In the United States alone, 150,000 people injure their ACL annually. While tearing the ACL is common, it is considered to be a substantial injury that can inhibit physical activities.

Another common tear is the meniscus. There are two menisci in the knee on the inside and outside of the knee joint.

Some people, including athletes, choose to avoid surgery and have physical therapy alone, along with wearing a knee brace while participating in sports.

Knee Injuries in Children are on the Rise

Unfortunately, more children seem to be tearing their ACL and meniscus than in the past. The Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia, Pennsylvania conducted a study which was presented at the American Academy of Pediatrics in Boston, Massachusetts.

Many sports medicine professionals have noticed the increase in these injuries in children, but the study seems to back this up with hard data. The study was conducted only among children in the Philadelphia hospital, but it is a large facility.

The study investigated knee injuries in children and teenagers younger than age 18 from 1999 to 2011. During that period of time, ACL tears increased by 11 per year, while meniscus tears increased by 14 per year.

Researchers hope that more studies will bring to light ways to prevent these injuries in children and will prompt athletic programs in schools and recreational facilities to implement preventative measures. These might include exercises to strengthen the legs, as well as instructions for preventing these injuries.

Sports medicine in New Jersey and other parts of the country specialize in treating injuries and providing rehabilitation related to physical activities, including dance.


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