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3 Low return rates in athletes who intend to return to Level-I sports after ACLR- the delaware-oslo acl cohort study
  1. Marie Pedersen1,2,
  2. May Arna Risberg1,2,3,4,
  3. Lynn Snyder-Mackler5,
  4. Hege Grindem1,2
  1. 1Department of Sports Medicine, Norwegian School of Sport Science, Oslo, Norway
  2. 2Norwegian Research Centre for Active Rehabilitation (NAR), Oslo, Norway
  3. 3Norwegian Institute of Sports Medicine (NIMI), Oslo, Norway
  4. 4Division of Orthopaedics, Oslo University Hospital, Oslo, Norway
  5. 5Department of Physical Therapy, University of Delaware, 540 South College Avenue, USA


Introduction Intention of returning to level-I sports (handball, soccer, basketball and floorball) is one of the main reasons for choosing anterior cruciate ligament reconstruction (ACLR). Our aim was to assess participation in level-I sports at one, two and five years postoperatively in those who choose ACLR to enable return to level-I sport. A secondary aim was to assess the relationship between participation in level-I sports and self-reported knee function.

Materials and methods Sixty patients who all stated they chose ACLR to return to level-I sport (55% women, median age 23 years [min-max: 14–39]) were included in a prospective cohort study. Participants had no major concomitant injuries and participated in nonprofessional competitive level-I sports ≥2 times/week prior to injury. Sports participation and International Knee Documentation Committee Subjective Knee Form (IKDC 2000)-scores was recorded one, two and five years postoperatively.

Results At one, two and five years after ACLR, 29/58 (50% [95% CI: 36% to 64%]), 30/55 (55%[95% CI: 41% to 68%]) and 15/55 (27% [95% CI: 15% to 39%]) participated in level-I sports, respectively (follow-up rate: 92%–97%). Among those who participated at one year, 7/24 (29%) had quit after two years. Six of 48 (13%) participated at all three follow-ups. Participation in level-I sports was associated with higher IKDC 2000-scores one (b=11.9; 95% CI: 4.4 to 19.3) and two years (b=9.9; 95% CI: 2.3 to 17.4) postoperatively.

Conclusion Patients considering undergoing ACLR to enable return to level-I sports should be informed of the modest likelihood of returning one to five years postoperatively. Very few sustain participation from one to five years. Participation in level-I sports is associated with better self-reported knee function.

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