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Medical Science Monitor Basic Research


eISSN: 1643-3750

Isometric behavior of the reconstructed medial patellofemoral ligament using two different femoral pulleys: A cadaveric study

Ioannis K Triantafillopoulos, Andreas Panagopoulos, Louw van Niekerk

Med Sci Monit 2007; 13(9): BR181-187

ID: 498325

Available online:

Published: 2007-09-01

Background: Several techniques have been described for reconstructing the medial patellofemoral ligament (MPFL). However, the anatomy of the medial patellar retinaculum and the isometry of both intact and reconstructed MPFL remain controversial. The purpose of this study was to investigate the isometric behavior of the reconstructed MPFL when two different pulleys are used for the reconstruction.
Material/Methods: Eight anatomical knees were dissected and the medial patellar retinaculum and MPFL were studied. A pilot technique for the reconstruction of the MPFL using a semitendinosus autograft was developed. A “dynamic” femoral fixation was chosen which utilized two different pulleys: the medial intermuscular septum (MIS) at the adductor’s tendon insertion and the posterior third of the medial collateral ligament (MCL). The isometric behavior of the reconstructed MPFL and the stability of both pulleys were investigated.
Results: The MPFL was a thickened, band-like condensation of the superficial MPR layer extending from the MFE to the medial border of the patella. The reconstructed MPFL demonstrated the most isometric behavior when the MCL was used as a pulley. The average difference in graft length during knee flexion from 0° to 90° when the MCL or MIS were used as a pulley was 1 mm and 4 mm, respectively. The MIS pulley was more stable but less isometric than the MCL pulley.
Conclusions: “Dynamic” MPFL reconstruction with a semitendinosus tendon autograft can restore patellofemoral stability without excessive soft-tissue dissection or implantation of hardware at the medial epicondyle, which can lead to symptoms of its own.

Keywords: Cadaver, Femur - surgery, Isometric Contraction - physiology, Ligaments - surgery