Medical questions & health advice by board certified doctors
"Is it possible to have an ACL reconstruction on an ACL you tore previously?"
I had an Allograft ACL Replacement 10 years ago. I re-tore it a little while ago (but only just found out about it) and recently tore my Medial Meniscus playing rugby. I want to have a Pateller Tendon Replacement this time for my ACL. Is that an option or do I have to have an ACL Revision? The surgeon I've gone to for my preliminary diagnosis has not mentioned any other options.
I'm sorry to hear that you've developed recurrent problems with your knee! This is a quite complicated issue, especially because you have already had ACL surgery in the past and you know also have damage to the medial meniscus. I recommend you discuss this with a skilled surgeon. ACL replacements are usually done either with an allograft (tissue not from your own body) or from taking a portion of a tendon from your own body (such as the patellar tendon procedure you are talking about). Both approaches have advantages and disadvantages, but I think in your case - where you already have a significant history of knee surgery - these are relatively less important. What matters here is what is technically possible, based on your knee anatomy, the extent of damage to the prior graft, and the extent of scarring in the knee. Getting a good answer to this question will likely require advanced imaging studies of the knee (such as by MRI, which you may already have had done) and consultation with a skilled surgeon. I'd suggest approaching the discussion with your surgeon in this way, by asking what they think are the range of options available to you, and which options are off the table technically due to your knee anatomy and history of prior surgery.
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