The knee is a complex joint that depends on bones, ligaments and muscles for its stability. There are four major ligaments in the knee – the medial and lateral collateral ligaments supporting either side of the joint, and two cruciate ligaments situated in the centre of the joint controlling forward and backward glide. All four ligaments work together to control rotation.The anterior cruciate ligament is the one most commonly requiring surgical reconstruction, but the same general principles apply to all procedures.
It is possible to replace the damaged ligament with an artificial one made of polyester and/or carbon fibre, however these are rarely used now as improved results are obtained using a natural graft taken from the patients own body (an autograft). Most commonly the graft is taken from the either the patellar tendon (on the front of the knee) or the hamstrings tendons (at the back of the knee). Both grafts have been shown to produce excellent results however, nothing is yet perfect and you may find confusing information if you try to research the topic. If you are unsure or wish to discuss the pros and cons in more detail do contact the clinic.