Healthy Tahoe: Researchers show ACL surgery successful over long term |

Healthy Tahoe: Researchers show ACL surgery successful over long term

Barton Health Staff
A skier sprays snow while on a downhill adventure.
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People who undergo knee surgery for a torn anterior cruciate ligament can expect to stay active and maintain a high quality of life, researchers report.

Activity levels may decline over time, but a new study found that those who had the knee operation could usually still play sports 10 years later.

“An active patient may view an ACL injury as devastating, but our research adds to short and long-term studies that show a good prognosis for return to pre-injury quality of life,” said the study’s corresponding author, Dr. Kurt Spindler.

Spindler, from the Cleveland Clinic department of orthopaedic surgery, added that these findings could help medical providers continue to make good treatment decisions.

The study also confirms that these injuries are typically just a setback, he said in a news release from the American Orthopaedic Society for Sports Medicine (AOSSM).

The ACL is a band that connects the thighbone to the main bone in the lower leg and holds the knee joint.

If the knee twists or extends too far, this ligament can tear.

The study involved people who had ACL reconstruction in one knee.

Of these patients, 90% were having their first surgery and 10% were having a follow-up reconstruction procedure.

The investigators followed more than 1,300 patients (83% of the original study group) for a decade.

Need a roadmap to recovery after a torn ACL?

Learn from board-certified orthopedic surgeon, Dr. Jeffrey A. Orr, who will present at Barton Health’s free community wellness lectures from 6–7 p.m Thursday, Dec. 12, at the Barton Center for Orthopedics & Wellness in South Lake Tahoe, and on Thursday, Jan. 9, from 6-7 p.m. at the Brewery Arts Center Performance Hall in Carson City.

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