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Return to Sport following ACL Reconstruction: The Australian Experience

  • Kate E. Webster
  • Julian A. Feller
  • Timothy S. WhiteheadEmail author
Chapter

Abstract

Return to sport has become an important outcome measure following anterior cruciate ligament (ACL) reconstruction surgery, but rates of return to pre-injury sport vary considerably. This chapter summarises the work of one research group in Melbourne, Australia, and compares those findings to other researches from Australia in this field.

Large cohort studies showed that most patients eventually attempt a return to sport. However, only approximately one-third resume and continue to play their pre-injury sport in the longer term. The rates of return to pre-injury sport appear to be higher in professional sports people, at least for Australian rules football.

For the most part, ACL reconstruction surgery is successful in terms of restoring knee stability and function. However, there are many factors involved in the decision-making process regarding return to play, and many athletes decide not to return for reasons other than their knee. Others may wish to return, but find that psychological barriers are too great to overcome.

Overall, returning to sport reflects an important participation outcome in this surgical group and should continue to be monitored in the longer term, as making a return to sport remains an important consideration for patients considering whether to undergo an ACL reconstruction in the first place.

Keywords

Anterior cruciate ligament reconstruction Return to sport 

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Copyright information

© Springer International Publishing Switzerland 2017

Authors and Affiliations

  • Kate E. Webster
    • 1
  • Julian A. Feller
    • 2
    • 1
  • Timothy S. Whitehead
    • 2
    Email author
  1. 1.School of Allied HealthLa Trobe UniversityMelbourneAustralia
  2. 2.Department of Orthopaedic SurgeryOrthoSport Victoria, Epworth HealthCareMelbourneAustralia

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