Skiers Who Tear ACLs Should Put Off Surgery

Skiers who tear their imagesACLs should think twice before going under the knife for repair. Why? Because researchers at the Sports Medicine and Shoulder Service at the Hospital for Special Surgery in New York City are convinced that one-quarter of recreational downhill skiers who suffer anterior cruciate ligament (ACL) injuries can recover without surgery. HealthDay reportsĀ that researchers at the hospital looked at 63 people who suffered a first-time skiing ACL tear and found that two tests conducted six to 12 weeks after the injury could identify patients who would recover without surgery. Study leader Dr. Robert Marx advises patients who tear their ACL during recreational skiing not to schedule surgery right after their injury. “They should wait,” says Marx. “They should be reevaluated at six to 12 weeks unless there is some other obvious reason to do surgery like a displaced meniscal tear or other ligament injuries. Most recreational skiers don’t have those, and they may be able to avoid surgery if they wait and get re-evaluated.” Marx points out that ACL tears from skiing are often less traumatic than those that occur while playing sports that involve pivoting, such as soccer or football. Read more in HealthDay.

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