The Anterior Cruciate Ligament, known as the ACL for short, is an extremely important piece of anatomy for individuals participating in those sports that require a lot of cutting and twisting activities. These sports include the likes of soccer, gymnastics, baseball, and basketball. Decades ago surgeons tried to suture the torn ligament back together, but that didn’t work because the healing potential is minimal. So the current standard of care involves actually replacing the ACL. There are 2 main options for performing an ACL reconstruction. One includes utilizing a patient’s own tissue which is referred to as an autograft. The 2nd option is referred to as an allograft and this is using tissue from a cadaver. When a patient’s own patellar tendon or hamstring tendon is used, those are autograft options. The same tissue is used in allograft situations if that is the chosen route. Studies have shown that both allograft and autograft options work well in allowing patients to return to high level athletic activities similar to those performed pre-injury. The Anterior Cruciate Ligament reconstruction surgery replaces the ligament in the knee with either tissue from the patient him or herself or tissue from a cadaver. The ACL is a ligament connecting the thighbone to the shinbone and assist patients with the ability to successfully perform twisting activities. The procedure itself is performed by making an incision vertically over the front part of the knee. If the individual’s own patellar tendon is being used as the new anterior cruciate ligament, the initial part procedure involves removing part of this tendon. The tendon itself is partially removed along with bony elements on either and where it comes out of the kneecap as well as from the tibia. This will end up becoming the new ACL. Most of the surgery is then performed through an arthroscopic camera. This is a tiny little camera that fiber optical he allows the surgeon to see inside the knee and the image shows up on the video screen. This allows the surgeon to properly configure the ACL and position it to anatomically replace the one that was torn. While the knee is bent, the damaged ACL is removed and shaved away, and the me is then cleaned of fraying that remains from the injury. The surgeon then inserts a pin in a diagonal manner through the tibia, which is the shinbone, and then through the femur, which is the thigh bone. This pin then becomes a guide for placing the new ACL reconstruction graft. Additional holes are drilled by the surgeon and then the graft is attached to this pin and pulled through and into proper position. Special screws are placed to secure the bony ends of the graft of both the femur and the tibia. The knee is then put through a full range of motion to make sure that there is no impingement. The procedure is then completed. If you have a torn ACL and are wondering whether surgery it is appropriate for you, Dr. Sumit Dewanjee at FXRX is a board certified, fellowship trained orthopedic surgeons Phoenix AZ. FXRX is the premier practice of Phoenix orthopedic surgeons in the state. Dr. Dewanjee specializes in the treatment of knee, shoulder and hip problems including such procedures as ACL reconstruction surgery. FXRX also specializes in fracture treatment and orthopedic bracing, treating each patient as if he or she were part of their own family! Call (480) 449-3979 to make your appointment TODAY!