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Ligament Tension in the ACL-deficient Knee: Assessment of Medial and Lateral Gaps

By David Mayman, Christopher Plaskos, Daniel Kendoff, G. Wernecke, Andrew D. Pearle and Richard Laskin


Obtaining symmetric and balanced gaps under equilateral loads is a common goal in posterior cruciate ligament (PCL)-retaining and -sacrificing TKAs. Owing to limitations in existing surgical tensors, however, tensing knee ligaments with standardized and symmetric loads has been possible only with the patella subluxated or everted. We therefore determined the influences of (1) patellar eversion versus complete reduction, (2) PCL resection, and (3) load magnitude on gap symmetry and balance in the anterior cruciate ligament (ACL)-deficient knee. We used a novel computer-controlled tensioner to measure gaps in 10 cadavers with an applied force of 50 N, 75 N, and 100 N per side. Gap data were acquired at 0º, 30º, 60º, 90º, and 120º flexion with the patella reduced and everted and with the PCL intact and resected. Everting the patella tightened the medial and lateral flexion gaps between 90º and 120º by 0.7 mm to 2.7 mm. PCL resection increased gaps from 30° to 120° by 1 mm to 3 mm. Increasing the force from 50 N to 100 N increased the mean gap by 0.5 mm. Everting the patella and resecting the PCL influenced gap balance and symmetry. Surgeons should be aware of how these conditions affect gaps during assessment and balancing

Topics: Original Article
Publisher: Springer-Verlag
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Provided by: PubMed Central
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