In the JournalsPerspective

Study finds predictors for ACL injury are dissimilar between male and female athletes

Except for increased anterior-posterior knee laxity, results from this study indicated female athletes and male athletes were not similar with regard to predictors for first-time noncontact ACL injury.

Researchers identified 109 high school or collegiate-level athletes with ACL injuries. Investigators used multivariate conditional logistic regression to analyze patients with ACL injuries and 227 matched controls and examined the effects of demographics, joint laxity, lower extremity alignment, strength and personality traits on the chance for an ACL injury. With results from the multivariate logistic regression, investigators created risk models.

Results from the risk models indicated that in male athletes, predictors for an ACL injury included an increase in anterior-posterior displacement of the tibia relative to femur, posterior knee stiffness, navicular drop and decreased standing quadriceps angle. Investigators noted the predictors for ACL injury in female athletes were a combination of having a parent who had sustained an ACL injury and increased anterior-posterior knee laxity and BMI. by Monica Jaramillo

 

Disclosures: The research was supported by a grant from the NIH (NIH R01 AR050421).  Please see the full study for a list of all other authors’ relevant financial disclosures.

Except for increased anterior-posterior knee laxity, results from this study indicated female athletes and male athletes were not similar with regard to predictors for first-time noncontact ACL injury.

Researchers identified 109 high school or collegiate-level athletes with ACL injuries. Investigators used multivariate conditional logistic regression to analyze patients with ACL injuries and 227 matched controls and examined the effects of demographics, joint laxity, lower extremity alignment, strength and personality traits on the chance for an ACL injury. With results from the multivariate logistic regression, investigators created risk models.

Results from the risk models indicated that in male athletes, predictors for an ACL injury included an increase in anterior-posterior displacement of the tibia relative to femur, posterior knee stiffness, navicular drop and decreased standing quadriceps angle. Investigators noted the predictors for ACL injury in female athletes were a combination of having a parent who had sustained an ACL injury and increased anterior-posterior knee laxity and BMI. by Monica Jaramillo

 

Disclosures: The research was supported by a grant from the NIH (NIH R01 AR050421).  Please see the full study for a list of all other authors’ relevant financial disclosures.

    Perspective
    Darren L. Johnson

    Darren L. Johnson

    First, I would like to commend the authors for a well-designed and well-powered multivariate analysis of risk factors associated with non-contact ACL injury. Vacek and colleagues clearly demonstrated the risk of non-contact injury is not only multifactorial in nature but, perhaps more importantly, that the risk factors differ between male and female athletes. For female athletes, parental history of ACL injury, increased anteroposterior knee laxity as measured with a KT-1000 and increased body mass index (BMI) significantly increased the odds of non-contact ACL injury. For male athletes, structural features that are thought to be involved with an increased likelihood of valgus knee collapse, including KT-1000 measures, quadriceps angle and navicular drop, significantly increased the risk of non-contact ACL injury.

    Clinically, the results of this study provide physicians, certified athletic trainers and other sports medicine professionals with specific factors to proactively identify athletes at increased risk of non-contact ACL injury. These measures, which include parental injury history, KT-1000 measurements, BMI, quadriceps angle and navicular drop, can be readily implemented in routine annual preseason physicals. Most of these time-efficient measures, with the exception of the KT-1000, can be done without additional costly equipment thus lowering barriers to early identification of the athletes at greatest risk of ACL injury. This then allows for targeted use of injury prevention programs and/or other interventions to be employed in an effort to lessen the likelihood of ACL injury for this at-risk population.

     

    • Darren L. Johnson, MD
    • Professor and Chair of Orthopaedic Surgery Director of Sports Medicine University of Kentucky Lexington, Kentucky

    Disclosures: Johnson reports no relevant financial disclosures.