Amateur football players not always keen on returning to play after ACL injuries

February 11, 2012

Despite the known success rates of reconstructive Anterior Cruciate Ligament (ACL) surgery, the number of high school and collegiate football players returning to play may not be as high as anticipated, say researchers presenting at the American Orthopaedic Society for Sports Medicine's Specialty Day in San Francisco, CA.

"Previous research shows that reconstructive surgeries are a generally effective treatment for ACL injured knees. While athletes may be physically capable of playing, we sometimes ignore other factors that may prevent them from getting back out there," said senior author Kurt P. Spindler, MD, of Vanderbilt .

The study examined data from patients enrolled in the Multicenter Orthopaedic Outcomes Network (MOON) cohort who underwent ACL reconstruction in 2002 and 2003. Of 149 high school and collegiate players, 62 and 70 percent returned to play, respectively. Among this group, 28% felt they did not perform at their previous level. Of those who did not return, 53% of the high school and 44% of collegiate players said fear of re-injury played a major role in their decision not to return.

"While return to play may be perceived as the central concern for a competitive athlete recovering from an injury, it is easy to ignore keeping a player off the field," noted Spindler. "Fear of re-injury and concern over decreased performance may hinder even the most physically capable athlete."

Authors suggest additional research needs to be performed to examine more recent years of data, as well as to analyze specific positions played as they relate to rate of return.

Explore further: New data provides direction for ACL injured knee treatments

Related Stories

New data provides direction for ACL injured knee treatments

February 11, 2012

Primary Anterior Cruciate Ligament (ACL) reconstruction improves quality of life and sports functionality for athletes, according to research presented today at the American Orthopaedic Society for Sports Medicine's Specialty ...

Recommended for you

Sleep can affect male fertility

October 19, 2016

(HealthDay)—Sleeping too little or too much can affect a man's ability to impregnate his partner, new research suggests.

Does it matter how long you sit—if you are fit?

October 19, 2016

More and more studies confirm that sitting is bad for our health, increasing the likelihood of developing cardiovascular disease and other lifestyle-related illnesses such as diabetes. Some studies have estimated that being ...


Please sign in to add a comment. Registration is free, and takes less than a minute. Read more

Click here to reset your password.
Sign in to get notified via email when new comments are made.