Femoral tunnel widening is similar between anteromedial portal and transtibial techniques following single-bundle anterior cruciate ligament reconstruction: a systematic review and meta-analysis
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In anterior cruciate ligament (ACL) reconstruction, there is concern regarding the potential risk of femoral tunnel widening in the anteromedial portal (AMP) technique due to the acute graft-bending angle at the aperture and the more elliptical aperture shape of the femoral tunnel compared to the transtibial (TT) techniques. Therefore, the aim of the current systematic review and meta-analysis was to compare the femoral tunnel widening between the AMP and TT techniques in patients who underwent ACL reconstruction.
It should be included the studies that reported on femoral tunnel widening in patients who underwent single-bundle ACL reconstruction, using soft-tissue tendon graft, with AMP and/or TT techniques. Two reviewers independently recorded data from each study, including the sample size and magnitude of tunnel widening after ACL reconstruction.
Twenty-one studies were finally included in this meta-analysis. The pooled changes of absolute millimeters of tunnel widening from the immediate postoperative status to the last follow-up did not differ significantly between the AMP and TT techniques at both the aperture [3.31 mm, 95% confidence interval (CI) 1.7–5.0. mm versus 2.9 mm, 95% CI 2.4–3.4 mm, P = n.s.] and the midportion (3.5 mm, 95% CI 0.8–6.3 mm versus 3.0 mm, 95% CI 2.2–3.9 mm, P = n.s.) of the femoral tunnel. No significant difference was observed between the two techniques in the relative percentage of femoral tunnel widening (AMP; 28.8%, 95% CI 14.8–42.9% vs. TT; 29.7%, 95% CI 15.6–43.7%, P = n.s.).
No significant difference in femoral tunnel widening was observed between the AMP and TT techniques, both in absolute millimeter and relative percentage, in patients who underwent single-bundle ACL reconstruction. This finding could alleviate the potential concerns associated with femoral tunnels being wider for the AMP than for the TT technique.
Level of evidence
KeywordsAnterior cruciate ligament reconstruction Tunnel widening Anteromedial portal Transtibial
This study was supported by SMC-Ottogi Research Fund (SMX1162171).
Compliance with ethical standards
Conflict of interest
The authors declare that there is no conflict interest.
This article does not contain any studies with human participants performed by any of the authors.
For this type of study, formal consent is not required.
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