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Bone Joint Res. 2014 Apr 9;3(4):95-100. doi: 10.1302/2046-3758.34.2000228. Print 2014.

Criteria for preserving posterior cruciate ligament depending on intra-operative gap measurement in total knee replacement.

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  • 1Funabashi Orthopedic Hospital, JointReplacement Center, 1-8-1, Hazama, Funabashi, Chiba, 274-0822, Japan.



Because posterior cruciate ligament (PCL) resection makes flexion gaps wider in total knee replacement (TKR), preserving or sacrificing a PCL affects the gap equivalence; however, there are no criteria for the PCL resection that consider gap situations of each knee. This study aims to investigate gap characteristics of knees and to consider the criteria for PCL resection.


The extension and flexion gaps were measured, first with the PCL preserved and subsequently with the PCL removed (in cases in which posterior substitute components were selected). The PCL preservation or sacrifice was solely determined by the gap measurement results, without considering other functions of the PCL such as 'roll back.'


Wide variations were observed in the extension and flexion gaps. The flexion gaps were significantly larger than the extension gaps. Cases with 18 mm or more flexion gap and with larger flexion than extension gap were implanted with cruciate retaining component. A posterior substitute component was implanted with the other cases.


In order to make adequate gaps, it is important to decide whether to preserve the PCL based on the intra-operative gap measurements made with the PCL intact. Cite this article: Bone Joint Res 2014;3:95-100.


Arthroplasty; Gap; Knee; Posterior cruciate ligament

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