STL Today—October 31, 2014
For the Rams to have two of their top players suffer ACL knee injuries in the same season seems like an extreme case of bad luck. For those same two players to both re-injure those ACLs within a 12-month period, well, that must be incredibly bad luck. One expert in the field of knee injuries says it’s not unusual for a player that has undergone surgery on a torn anterior cruciate ligament to re-tear the same ACL.
Are chances of a full recovery lessened by a second ACL surgery?
Dr. Scott Rodeo of Hospital for Special Surgery in New York would only go as far as saying the results of a second knee surgery for a torn ACL are a little less predictable than the first time around. "And you can say that for anything, whether it's something in the shoulder, or a hip replacement, or an ACL surgery," Rodeo said. "In revision (second) surgery, it's a little more complex on these knees that already have prior surgery. So the prognosis can sometimes be a bit more guarded."
In terms of deciding when a football player's surgically repaired knee is good to go, there’s a set of criteria that isn’t based on the calendar.
"A lot of it's based on the athletes' functional ability. That is their strength, their balance, coordination — things like that," Rodeo said.
"There are, in fact, prevention programs built around that. Teaching athletes how to land from a jump, things like that. Because there are certain positions of the hip and the knee that seem to predispose an athlete to risk. Or at least that we see the differences in those athletes that are injured, versus those that are not."
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