Osteoarthritis risk not diminished in double bundle ACL surgeries

July 13, 2012

Osteoarthritis progression is not more likely in patients who have undergone single-bundle ACL reconstruction, says researchers presenting their work today at the American Orthopaedic Society for Sports Medicine's Annual Meeting in Baltimore.

"While previous studies have shown the benefits of double bundle ACL reconstruction compared to single bundle, none have focused on the long-term effects of osteoarthritis (OA)," noted Jongkeun Seon, MD, corresponding author from Chonnam National University Hwasun Hospital. "A final follow-up in our study showed 9.6 percent of the double bundle group and 10 percent of the single bundle group having signs of OA progression, which is an insignificant difference."

Out of 112 examined, including 89 men and 23 women, all recovered full range of motion within six months of , with functional and physical results similar in the two test groups. While ACL surgeries provide these improvements, an estimated 50% of patients develop osteoarthritis over time. Different surgical procedures are continually debated as being more or less effective.

"Our study shows little connection between the onset of and single or double bundle surgery," said Seon. "Patients over the age of 40 at time of surgery did show OA change more frequently, however. We need to continue examining these patients as they age to see if the number of cases continues to increase."

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