Clinical Orthopaedics and Related Research®

, Volume 470, Issue 3, pp 824–834 | Cite as

Single- versus Double-bundle ACL Reconstruction: Is There Any Difference in Stability and Function at 3-year Followup?

  • Alberto Gobbi
  • Vivek Mahajan
  • Georgios Karnatzikos
  • Norimasa Nakamura
Symposium: Complex Knee Ligament Surgery



Despite a number of studies comparing postoperative stability and function after anatomic double-bundle and single-bundle anterior cruciate ligament reconstruction (ACLR), it remains unclear whether double-bundle reconstruction improves stability or function.


We therefore asked whether patients having single- and double-bundle ACLR using semitendinosus (ST) alone differed with regard to (1) postoperative stability; (2) ROM; and (3) five functional scores.


We prospectively followed 60 patients with an isolated anterior cruciate ligament (ACL) injury. Thirty patients underwent single-bundle and 30 patients underwent double-bundle ACL reconstruction. Clinically we assessed stability and range of motion (ROM); anteroposterior stability was assessed by Rolimeter and rotational stability by a pivot shift test. Function was assessed by IKDC, Noyes, Lysholm, Marx, and Tegner activity scales. The minimum followup was 36 months (mean, 46.2 months; range, 36–60 months).


Residual anteroposterior laxity at 3 years postoperatively was similar in both groups: 1.4 ± 0.3 mm versus 1.4 ± 0.2 mm, respectively. We observed no difference in the pivot shift test. ROM was similar in both groups, although double-bundle patients required more physical therapy sessions to gain full ROM. IKDC, Noyes, Lysholm, Marx, and Tegner scores were similar at final followup.


Double-bundle reconstruction of the ACL did not improve function or stability compared with single-bundle reconstruction.

Level of Evidence

Level II, therapeutic study. See Guidelines for Authors for a complete description of levels of evidence.


Anterior Cruciate Ligament Anterior Cruciate Ligament Reconstruction Femoral Tunnel Tibial Tunnel Pivot Shift 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.



We thank Dr Celeste Scotti for evaluating all patients preoperatively and at 3, 6, 12, 24, and 36 months postoperatively. We also thank Dr Somanna Malchira for his help in preparing the manuscript. We also thank Andrea Primo, professional statistician, for statistical analysis of our study.


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Copyright information

© The Association of Bone and Joint Surgeons® 2011

Authors and Affiliations

  • Alberto Gobbi
    • 1
  • Vivek Mahajan
    • 1
  • Georgios Karnatzikos
    • 1
  • Norimasa Nakamura
    • 2
  1. 1.Orthopaedic Arthroscopic Surgery InternationalMilanoItaly
  2. 2.Department of OrthopaedicsOsaka Health Science UniversityOsakaJapan

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