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Anatomic ACL reconstruction reduces risk of post-traumatic osteoarthritis: a systematic review with minimum 10-year follow-up

  • Benjamin B. Rothrauff
  • Ahmed Jorge
  • Darren de Sa
  • Jeffrey Kay
  • Freddie H. Fu
  • Volker MusahlEmail author
KNEE

Abstract

Purpose

To systematically review the literature for radiographic prevalence of osteoarthritis (OA) at a minimum of 10 years following anterior cruciate ligament (ACL) reconstruction (ACLR) with anatomic vs. non-anatomic techniques. It was hypothesized that the incidence of OA at long-term follow-up would be lower following anatomic compared to non-anatomic ACLR.

Methods

A systematic review was performed by searching PubMed, MEDLINE, EMBASE, and the Cochrane Library, for studies reporting OA prevalence by radiographic classification scales at a minimum of 10 years following ACLR with autograft. Studies were categorized as anatomic if they met or exceeded a score of 8 according the Anatomic ACL Reconstruction Scoring Checklist (AARSC), while those with a score less than 8 were categorized as non-anatomic/non-specified. Secondary outcomes included graft failure and measures of knee stability (KT-1000, Pivot Shift) and functional outcomes [Lysholm, Tegner, subjective and objective International Knee Documentation Committee (IKDC) scores]. OA prevalence on all radiographic scales was recorded and adapted to a normalized scale.

Results

Twenty-six studies were included, of which 5 achieved a score of 8 on the AARSC. Using a normalized OA classification scale, 87 of 375 patients (23.2%) had diagnosed OA at a mean follow-up of 15.3 years after anatomic ACLR and 744 of 1696 patients (43.9%) had OA at mean follow-up of 15.9 years after non-anatomic/non-specified ACLR. The AARSC scores were 9.2 ± 1.3 for anatomic ACLR and 5.1 ± 1.1 for non-anatomic/non-specified ACLR. Secondary outcomes were relatively similar between techniques but inconsistently reported.

Conclusions

This study showed that anatomic ACLR, defined as an AARSC score ≥ 8, was associated with lower OA prevalence at long-term follow-up. Additional studies reporting long-term outcomes following anatomic ACLR are needed, as high-level studies of anatomic ACLR are lacking. The AARSC is a valuable resource in performing and evaluating anatomic ACLR. Anatomic ACLR, as defined by the AARSC, may reduce the long-term risk of post-traumatic OA following ACL injury to a greater extent than non-anatomic ACLR.

Level of evidence

IV.

Keywords

Anterior cruciate ligament ACL reconstruction Osteoarthritis Anatomic Checklist 

Notes

Funding

There was no funding for this study.

Compliance with ethical standards

Conflict of interest

The authors declare no conflicts of interest.

Ethical approval

This article does not contain any studies with human participants or animals performed by any of the authors.

Supplementary material

167_2019_5665_MOESM1_ESM.docx (54 kb)
Supplementary material 1 (DOCX 53 kb)

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Copyright information

© European Society of Sports Traumatology, Knee Surgery, Arthroscopy (ESSKA) 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  • Benjamin B. Rothrauff
    • 1
  • Ahmed Jorge
    • 1
  • Darren de Sa
    • 1
  • Jeffrey Kay
    • 2
  • Freddie H. Fu
    • 1
  • Volker Musahl
    • 1
    Email author
  1. 1.Department of Orthopaedic Surgery, UPMC Freddie Fu Sports Medicine CenterUniversity of PittsburghPittsburghUSA
  2. 2.Division of Orthopaedic Surgery, Department of SurgeryMcMaster UniversityHamiltonCanada

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