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Am J Sports Med. 1986 May-Jun;14(3):205-10.

Followup of the acute nonoperated isolated anterior cruciate ligament tear.

Abstract

This report is an attempt to analyze what happens to an isolated ACL tear that is treated nonoperatively. The results of 40 patients treated initially by nonoperative means for this injury and followed an average of 4 years are reported. A very small percentage of these patients had associated meniscal pathology. Secondary reconstructive surgery was necessary in 12 patients (30%). Primary meniscal tears were present in 4 of 25 knees (16%) and secondary meniscal tears occurred in an additional four of the patients. Giving way was a problem for 36 (86%) of the nonoperated patients, but pain and swelling were not significant problems for most. Full return to unlimited athletic activities was possible for only four (14%) of the patients. Objective signs of ACL insufficiency could be demonstrated on all patients upon clinical examination at followup. Overall grading of the knees revealed 87.5% fair or poor results.

PMID:
3752360
[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
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