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The Incidence of Deep Venous Thrombosis After Arthroscopically Assisted Anterior Cruciate Ligament Reconstruction

      Purpose

      The purpose of our study was to retrospectively assess and analyze the incidence of deep venous thrombosis (DVT) after arthroscopically assisted anterior cruciate ligament reconstruction (ACLR) at our institution.

      Methods

      We conducted a retrospective analysis of 249 arthroscopic ACLRs performed in our hospital between February 2009 and February 2012. The surgical procedure was standardized in all the patients and was conducted by the same 2 surgeons. Quadrupled hamstring autograft was used in all the patients. No patient was given nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs for the first 2 weeks after surgery. A unilateral contrast venography examination was performed on the third postoperative day. Patients were confined to bed once DVT was confirmed, followed by therapeutic doses of batroxobin. The proportion of patients with DVT was calculated. The significance of the association between clinical factors and postoperative DVT was determined.

      Results

      This study included 171 patients (123 men and 48 women), with a mean age (±SD) of 30.1 ± 10.0 years. DVT was detected in 24 patients (14.0%; 95% confidence interval, 8.8% to 19.3%). Body mass index (BMI), operative time, operator, and duration of tourniquet application were not significant risk factors for DVT. The risk of DVT was significantly higher in patients aged 35 years or older (P < .01). Higher risk for DVT was also identified in female patients (P < .05). Pulmonary embolism did not develop after thrombolytic therapy in any of the 24 patients with DVT after ACLR.

      Conclusions

      The incidence of DVT in patients who underwent arthroscopic ACLR was 14% in this study. Female patients and those aged 35 years or older have a significantly higher risk of DVT developing after ACLR; thus thromboprophylaxis is advocated in these patients.

      Level of Evidence

      Level IV, therapeutic case series.
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