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, 26 (5), 1384-1391

The Posterior Horn of the Lateral Meniscus Is a Reliable Novel Landmark for Femoral Tunnel Placement in ACL Reconstruction

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The Posterior Horn of the Lateral Meniscus Is a Reliable Novel Landmark for Femoral Tunnel Placement in ACL Reconstruction

Andreas Weiler et al. Knee Surg Sports Traumatol Arthrosc.

Abstract

Purpose: Femoral tunnel placement is essential for good outcome in anterior cruciate ligament (ACL) reconstruction. In the past, several attempts have been made to optimize femoral tunnel placement. It was observed that the posterior horn of the lateral meniscus was always located directly below to the desired femoral ACL tunnel position, when the knee was brought to deep flexion (> 120°). The goal of the present study was to verify the hypothesis that the posterior horn of the lateral meniscus can be used as a landmark for femoral tunnel placement.

Methods: Out of a consecutive series of ACL reconstructions done by a single surgeon, 55 lateral radiographs were evaluated according to the quadrant method by Bernard and Hertel. Additionally, on anterior-posterior radiographs the femoral tunnel angle was determined.

Results: In the present case series the posterior horn of the lateral meniscus could be identified and used as a landmark for femoral tunnel placement in all cases. The mean tunnel depth was 24 ± 5.1% and the mean tunnel height was 31.3 ± 5.7%. The mean femoral tunnel angle was 41 ± 4.9° using the anatomical axis as a reference. Compared to previous cadaver studies the data of the present study were within their anatomical range of the native ACL insertion site.

Conclusion: The suggested technique using the posterior horn of the lateral meniscus as a landmark for femoral tunnel placement showed reproducible results and matches the native ACL insertion site compared to previous cadaveric studies. In particular, non-experienced ACL surgeons will benefit from this apparent landmark and the corresponding easy-to-use ACL reconstruction method.

Level of evidence: IV.

Keywords: ACL reconstruction; Landmark; Lateral meniscus; Posterior horn.

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