Acl Reconstruction With Quadriceps Tendon

What is an ACL reconstruction with a quadriceps tendon?

An ACL (anterior cruciate ligament) reconstruction with a quadriceps tendon autograft is a procedure that involves the removal and replacement or reconstruction of a torn ACL ligament in the knee. The ACL is replaced with a portion of the quadriceps tendon taken from the leg. The quadriceps tendon is a dense tissue that is located above the kneecap, also called the patella. The goal of the procedure is to tighten the knee ligament and restore the stability of the knee.

The main indication of ACL reconstruction with a quadriceps tendon autograft is an ACL tear. The ACL tear may occur due to the following reasons:

  • A sudden change of direction while running
  • A sudden slowing down while running
  • Landing incorrectly from a jump
  • A direct blow to one side of your knee

When the ACL ligament is injured, you may hear a loud “pop” and feel the knee buckle. Within a few hours after an ACL ligament injury, your knee may begin to swell, which occurs due to bleeding within the torn ligament. Your knee may also feel unstable or give away, especially when trying to change direction.

How does Dr van Niekerk perform ACL reconstruction with a quadriceps tendon autograft?

During the procedure, Dr van Niekerk will make two small incisions on your knee and pass through an arthroscope through one of the incisions. An arthroscope is a thin tube that has a camera attached to it that is connected to an external monitor to allow the orthopaedic surgeon to view the knee joint. He removes the ACL ligament using small surgical instruments and creates a pathway for the new ACL.

Dr van Niekerk creates an incision over the quadriceps tendon and removes a portion of the tendon to prepare the new ACL ligament graft. Afterwards, he inserts the arthroscope into the knee joint through one of the incisions. He then drills small holes into the upper and lower bones where the knee joint bones come together. The holes help create a tunnel in preparation for the graft. The tendon graft is pulled through the tunnel and holes previously made in the tibia and femur. After the procedure, he uses sutures to seal the incisions.

What is recovery like?

After surgery, pain management with medications and ice packs will be recommended. Wound care and bathing instructions will be provided to you. Avoid strenuous and heavy lifting activities. A knee brace or immobiliser may be required to protect the surgical site.


What type of anaesthesia will be used?

ACL reconstruction with a quadriceps tendon is normally performed under general anaesthesia.

How long does recovery take?

Recovery may take approximately 8-12 weeks.

Is a quadriceps graft best for ACL?

The quadriceps graft is a popular and widely-selected graft option for ACL repair.