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A minority of athletes pass symmetry criteria in a series of hop and strength tests irrespective of having an ACL reconstructed knee or being noninjured
Umeå University, Faculty of Medicine, Department of Community Medicine and Rehabilitation, Section of Physiotherapy. Umeå University, Faculty of Social Sciences, Umeå School of Business and Economics (USBE), Statistics.ORCID iD: 0000-0002-6339-9544
Department of Women’s and Children’s Health, Karolinska Institutet, Stockholm, Sweden .
Umeå University, Faculty of Medicine, Department of Community Medicine and Rehabilitation, Section of Physiotherapy.ORCID iD: 0000-0002-0366-4609
2023 (English)In: Sports Health, ISSN 1941-7381, Vol. 15, no 1, p. 45-51Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

Background: Between-leg symmetry in 1-leg hop and knee strength performances is considered important after anterior cruciate ligament reconstruction (ACLR) to facilitate a safer return to sport. While few athletes with ACLR demonstrate symmetry in test batteries, reference data for noninjured athletes are lacking, thus questioning how ACLR-specific poor symmetry is.

Hypothesis: Athletes with ACLR (hamstring autograft) show lower symmetry and have a lower proportion of symmetric individuals than noninjured athletes for knee flexion strength but not for hop for distance, vertical hop, and knee extension strength.

Study design: Cross-sectional.

Level of Evidence: Level 3.

Methods: A total of 47 athletes with ACLR (median 13.0 months post-ACLR) who had returned to their sport, and 46 noninjured athletes participated. Symmetry was calculated between the worse and better legs for each test and combinations of them using the limb symmetry index (LSIWORSE-BETTER, ranging from 0% to 100%). The 2 groups were compared for these values and the proportions of individuals classified as symmetric (LSIWORSE-BETTER ≥90%) using independent t-tests and Fisher’s exact tests, respectively.

Results: Athletes with ACLR were less symmetric than noninjured athletes for knee flexion strength with a lower LSIWORSE-BETTER (83% vs 91%, P < 0.01) and a lower proportion of symmetric individuals (39% vs 63%, P = 0.04). No differences between groups were revealed for the hop tests, knee extension strength, or combinations of tests (P > 0.05). Only 17% of the athletes with ACLR and 24% of the noninjured athletes demonstrated symmetric performances for all 4 tests.

Conclusion: Athletes with ACLR (hamstring autograft) showed poorer symmetry in knee flexion strength than noninjured athletes, although both groups had few individuals who passed the test battery’s symmetry criteria.

Clinical relevance: Symmetry is uncommon among athletes irrespective of ACLR and should be considered regarding expected rehabilitation outcomes and return-to-sport decisions post-ACLR.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Sage Publications, 2023. Vol. 15, no 1, p. 45-51
Keywords [en]
CL reconstruction, hop testing, knee injury, rehabilitation, strength testing
National Category
Physiotherapy
Identifiers
URN: urn:nbn:se:umu:diva-194428DOI: 10.1177/19417381221097949ISI: 000818636000001PubMedID: 35762123Scopus ID: 2-s2.0-85133382182OAI: oai:DiVA.org:umu-194428DiVA, id: diva2:1656179
Part of project
Knee Motor Control after Injury of the Anterior Cruciate Ligament: Clinical and Laboratory-Based Assessment in relation to Functional Performance, Proprioception and Associated Brain Activity, Swedish Research Council
Funder
Swedish Research Council, 2017-00892Available from: 2022-05-04 Created: 2022-05-04 Last updated: 2023-01-11Bibliographically approved

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Markström, JonasHäger, Charlotte K.

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