Isolated posterior cruciate ligament injuries usually are treated nonoperatively, although some patients remain symptomatic, and degenerative changes within the patellofemoral joint and the medial compartment of the tibiofemoral joint have been seen in followup studies. In vitro simulation of knee squatting was done to quantify the influence of the posterior cruciate ligament on tibiofemoral and patellofemoral kinematics. For five knee specimens, knee kinematics were measured before and after sectioning the posterior cruciate ligament, and compared using a Wilcoxon signed rank test. The only kinematic parameters that changed significantly after sectioning the posterior cruciate ligament were the tibial posterior translation and patellar flexion. The posterior translation of the tibia increased significantly between 25° and 90° flexion. The average increase in the posterior translation exceeded 10 mm at 90° flexion. The patellar flexion increased significantly from 30° to 90° flexion. The average patellar flexion increase peaked at 4.4° at 45° flexion. Increased tibial translation could adversely influence joint stability. Increased patellar flexion could increase the patellofemoral joint pressure, especially at the inferior pole, leading to degenerative changes within the patellofemoral joint.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Orthopedics and Sports Medicine