-- Robert Preidt
SATURDAY, March 15, 2014 (HealthDay News) -- Young people who
have a type of knee surgery called anterior cruciate ligament (ACL)
reconstruction may be at increased risk for arthritis in that knee
later in life, a small new study suggests.
This type of surgery is used to repair ACL tears, which can
occur in sports such as football, basketball, soccer and
The study included 32 people who had ACL reconstruction when
they were aged 12 to 16 and were assessed 10 to 20 years after
their surgery. Evidence of osteoarthritis was found in 65 percent
of the knees that had the surgery, compared with 14 percent of
Osteoarthritis, the most common type of arthritis, is usually
associated with chronic wear and tear on the joints.
The findings were scheduled for presentation Saturday at a
meeting of the American Orthopaedic Society for Sports Medicine,
held in New Orleans. The study data and conclusions should be
viewed as preliminary until published in a peer-reviewed
"Long-term follow-ups after the surgical treatment of ACL injuries in kids are rare and this is one of the few studies that has been able to track individuals," lead author Dr. Olle Mansson said in a society news release.
"Often these procedures do allow individuals to return to the playing field and continue an active lifestyle," Mansson added. "However, it is still important to evaluate long-term effects such as osteoarthritis when considering surgeries for these pediatric patients."
Although the study found an association between ACL
reconstruction in kids and a raised risk of knee arthritis later in
life, it did not prove a cause-and-effect relationship.
The U.S. National Library of Medicine has more about
anterior cruciate ligament surgery.
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