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Tuesday, 21 June 2011

New device could revolutionise major knee surgery

University of Aberdeen
June 20, 2011

Damage to the cruciate knee ligaments has cut short the careers of many sports stars but treatment for the injury could be revolutionised by a new device which has just secured a top innovation award.

Researchers from the University of Aberdeen’s School of Engineering in partnership with Mr Martyn Snow, a leading specialist in joints and cartilage at the Royal Orthopaedic Hospital, have developed a new fixation mechanism which could improve the success rate in cruciate knee ligament surgery.

The team was funded by the NHS to study the rupture of the anterior cruciate ligament (ACL). The ACL is the main ligament in the middle of the knee which stabilises the knee joint and the team has developed a device to replace the screws traditionally used in this type of surgery.

ACL injuries are particularly common in sports people — Michael Owen famously ruptured his during the first few minutes of England’s World Cup match against Sweden in 2006 and Tiger Woods also had problems with his ACL during the 2008 US Open.

However it is not confined to sportsmen and women and surgery is required for ACL injury by around 11,000 people in the United Kingdom each year while 200,000 undergo procedures in America.


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