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A Comparison of Two-Year Anterior Cruciate Ligament Reconstruction Clinical Outcomes Using All-Soft Tissue Quadriceps Tendon Autograft With Femoral/Tibial Cortical Suspensory Fixation Versus Tibial Interference Screw Fixation

      Purpose

      To contribute to future quadriceps tendon harvest and fixation guidelines in the setting of anterior cruciate ligament reconstruction by comparing 2-year patient-reported subjective knee outcome scores and incidence of graft-related complications between the shorter harvest all-inside tibial-femoral suspensory fixation (TFSF) approach versus the longer harvest standard tibial interference screw fixation technique.

      Methods

      Patients who underwent primary anterior cruciate ligament reconstruction with all soft tissue quadriceps tendon autograft from January 2017 to May 2019 were identified for inclusion. Patients were matched into 2 cohorts of 62 based on reconstruction technique. All patients completed baseline and minimum 2-year International Knee Documentation Committee, Tegner Activity Level, and Lysholm questionnaires and were queried regarding subsequent procedures and complications to the operative knee.

      Results

      Average graft length for the all-inside TFSF was 69.55 (95% confidence interval 68.99-70.19) mm versus 79.27 (95% confidence interval 77.21-81.34) mm in the tibial screw fixation cohort (P = .00001). Two-year Lysholm scores were greater in the TFSF cohort (P = .04) but were not clinically significant. There was no difference in 2-year International Knee Documentation Committee (P = .09) or Tegner (P = .69) scores between cohorts, but more patients in the TFSF cohort returned to or exceeded their baseline activity level compared with the tibial screw fixation cohort (73% vs 61%, P = .25). Seven patients in the TFSF cohort versus 13 in the tibial screw fixation cohort reported anterior knee pain or kneeling difficulty (P = .22). There were no differences in reported complications.

      Conclusions

      All-inside soft-tissue quadriceps tendon autograft with TFSF resulted in clinically comparable subjective outcome scores at 2 years to tibial screw fixation. There were also no differences in complications or reports of anterior knee pain or kneeling difficulty. All-inside TFSF can be a viable alternative to tibial screw fixation for all-soft tissue quadriceps autograft.

      Level of Evidence

      III, comparative therapeutic trial.
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