Femoral intercondylar notch stenosis and correlation to anterior cruciate ligament injuries. A prospective study

Am J Sports Med. 1994 Mar-Apr;22(2):198-202; discussion 203. doi: 10.1177/036354659402200208.


To evaluate the possible relationship between femoral intercondylar notch stenosis and anterior cruciate ligament injuries in pivoting and cutting sports, a 2-year prospective study was performed on intercollegiate athletes at a Division I university. Daily practice times and athlete participation in practices and games were recorded for each sport during the 2-year period. Bilateral intercondylar notch view radiographs were taken of all athletes enrolled in the study. The notch width index, a ratio that measures the width of the anterior outlet of the intercondylar notch divided by the total condylar width at the level of the popliteal groove, was measured for each knee. A total of 213 athletes, representing 415 anterior cruciate ligament-intact knees, were enrolled in the study. There were 7 anterior cruciate ligament tears. Statistical analysis demonstrated a correlation between femoral intercondylar notch stenosis and anterior cruciate ligament injuries. No statistical difference was found between the sex of the athlete and notch width indices or rate of anterior cruciate ligament tears. Athletes with intercondylar notch stenosis appear to be at increased risk for noncontact anterior cruciate ligament injuries.

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Anterior Cruciate Ligament Injuries*
  • Athletic Injuries / pathology*
  • Athletic Injuries / prevention & control
  • Constriction, Pathologic
  • Female
  • Femur / pathology*
  • Humans
  • Knee Joint / pathology*
  • Male
  • Prospective Studies
  • Risk Factors