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Sports Med Arthrosc. 2011 Jun;19(2):93-103. doi: 10.1097/JSA.0b013e3182191a7e.

Initial assessment of the acute and chronic multiple-ligament injured (dislocated) knee.

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  • 1Department of Orthopaedics and Sports Medicine, University of Washington, Seattle, WA 98195-4060, USA.


Multiple-ligament injured knees resulting from knee dislocations are uncommon but serious injuries. These injuries can present to the emergency room acutely or in clinic on a delayed basis, but regardless of the setting they require a complete and detailed assessment to evaluate the extent of the injury. Complicating the diagnosis of a knee dislocation is the fact that acute knee dislocations often spontaneously reduce or are reduced by paramedics in the field before evaluation by a physician. In most cases, pain in the knee, a large knee effusion, and swelling of the effected limb are the only signs and symptoms of a knee dislocation. Quick and accurate assessment of these injuries is required to determine the presence of any limb threatening arterial injuries. In this chapter, we present the complete assessment of acute and chronic multiple ligament knee injuries.

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