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The number of girls and women participating in all levels of sports has risen greatly in recent years, and the way they play has changed too. Women’s sports used to be played by a slow defensive style. Today, the sports are played with speed, precision, and power. With these changes have come increased injuries, and female athletes have higher injury rates than men in many sports. Knee injuries have been rising in female sports. Anterior crutiate ligament (ACL) injuries have become the most common injury in the knee to female athletes. Females are four times more susceptible to injury then men.
The ACL is a dynamic structure whose main function is to provide primary restraint to anterior tibial subluxation. It provides secondary restraint limiting internal rotation and restraint with the knee in full extension. Along with the posterior crutiate ligament, it provides the axis for knee rotation and links rotation with flexion and extension.
The ligament is primarily made up of two bands, the anteromedial and posterolateral, and an intermediate band sometimes present. The ACL runs from the posteromedial portion of the lateral femoral condyle in an inferior, anterior, and medial orientation to an area just lateral to the medial tibial eminence. The posterolateral band is tightest when the knee is in extension, and the anteromedial band is tightest with the knee in flexion.
The majority of…