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Arch Bone Jt Surg. 2015 Jan;3(1):9-12. Epub 2015 Jan 15.

Evidence-Based ACL Reconstruction.

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  • 1E. Carlos Rodriguez-Merchan MD, PhD, Department of Orthopaedic Surgery, La Paz University Hospital, Madrid, Spain.


There is controversy in the literature regarding a number of topics related to anterior cruciate ligament (ACL) reconstruction. The purpose of this article is to answer the following questions: 1) Bone-patellar tendon-bone reconstruction (BPTB-R) or hamstrimg reconstruction (H-R); 2) Double bundle or single bundle; 3) Allograft or authograft; 4) Early or late reconstruction; 5) Rate of return to sports after ACL reconstruction; 6) Rate of osteoarthritis after ACL reconstruction. A Cochrane Library and PubMed (MEDLINE) search of systematic reviews and meta-analysis related to ACL reconstruction was performed. The key words were: ACL reconstruction, systematic reviews and meta-analysis. The main criteria for selection were that the articles were systematic reviews and meta-analyses focused on the aforementioned questions. Sixty-nine articles were found, but only 26 were selected and reviewed because they had a high grade (I-II) of evidence. BPTB-R was associated with better postoperative knee stability but with a higher rate of morbidity. However, the results of both procedures in terms of functional outcome in the long-term were similar. The double-bundle ACL reconstruction technique showed better outcomes in rotational laxity, although functional recovery was similar between single-bundle and double-bundle. Autograft yielded better results than allograft. There was no difference between early and delayed reconstruction. 82% of patients were able to return to some kind of sport participation. 28% of patients presented radiological signs of osteoarthritis with a follow-up of minimum 10 years.


ACL; BPTB; Hamstring; Reconstruction


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