Effect of meniscal loss on knee stability after single-bundle anterior cruciate ligament reconstruction

  • Frank A. PetriglianoEmail author
  • Volker Musahl
  • Eduardo M. Suero
  • Musa Citak
  • Andrew D. Pearle



The menisci are known to be important secondary constraints to anterior translation of the tibia in the ACL-deficient knee. The effect of meniscal loss on knee stability as measured by the magnitude of the pivot shift following ACL reconstruction is unknown. The objective of this investigation was to determine the effect of meniscectomy on knee stability following two single-bundle ACL reconstruction strategies.

Materials and Methods

A mechanized pivot shift was performed on cadaveric specimens in the ACL-intact and ACL-deficient state. Tibiofemoral translation was recorded using a surgical navigation system. The ACL was reconstructed utilizing a nonanatomic graft (n = 10) extending from the posterolateral tibial footprint to the anteromedial femoral footprint, or an anatomic anteromedial single-bundle graft extending from the anteromedial tibial footprint to the anteromedial femoral footprint (n = 10) and testing repeated. The medial or lateral meniscus was sectioned and the examination repeated. The other meniscus was sectioned and the examination subsequently repeated.


Lateral compartment translation during the pivot shift was significantly reduced following anatomic ACL reconstruction. In the nonanatomic group, lateral compartment translation increased by 9.1 mm (P < 0.001) after unicomparmental meniscectomy and 11.5 mm (P < 0.001) after bicompartmental meniscectomy. In the anatomic reconstruction group, lateral compartment translation increased by 7.6 mm (P < 0.001) after bicompartmental meniscectomy.


With isolated ACL injury, anatomic single-bundle ACL reconstruction controlled the pivot shift during time zero testing. However, significant increases in lateral compartment translation during the pivot shift are seen following bicompartmental meniscectomy. Nonanatomic ACL reconstruction was less effective in controlling the pivot shift at time zero testing, and significant increases in lateral compartment translation during the pivot shift were seen following both unicomparmental and bicompartmental meniscectomy.


ACL Meniscectomy Anatomic Pivot shift Biomechanics Navigation 


Conflict of interest

The authors declare that they have no conflict of interest.


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag 2011

Authors and Affiliations

  • Frank A. Petrigliano
    • 1
    Email author
  • Volker Musahl
    • 2
  • Eduardo M. Suero
    • 3
  • Musa Citak
    • 3
  • Andrew D. Pearle
    • 3
  1. 1.Department of Orthopaedic Surgery, David Geffen School of MedicineUCLALos AngelesUSA
  2. 2.Department of Orthopaedic SurgeryUniversity of PittsburghPittsburghUSA
  3. 3.Hospital for Special SurgeryNew YorkUSA

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