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A prospective study was conducted of how the muscle strength of the donor knee is affected by harvesting of the autogenous semitendinosus tendon (St) for use as a substitute graft material in cruciate ligament reconstruction. There were 25 patients from whom only the St was harvested from the contralateral (i.e., healthy/donor) knee. Using a Biodex System II (Biodex, New York, NY), the strength of the donor knee was measured during both extension and flexion, both before and 12 months after the tendon harvesting procedure. A comparative study was made of the preharvest and postharvest values for the peak torque and peak torque angle in the isokinetic contraction. There were no statistically significant differences between the preharvest and postharvest peak torque values of the donor knee. However, the peak torque angle decreased significantly after the tendon harvest; the range of the mean decrease was from 11.7 degrees to 15.0 degrees. This indicates that there was a change to a small flexion angle (P < .05). After the tendon harvest, regardless of the applied angular velocity, more than 80% of the cases showed a change of torque curve shape in which there was no peak in the latter half, and the position of the peak was shifted to the left. In conclusion, the results of this study indicate that harvesting of the autogenous St does not affect the peak torque, but the peak torque angle during flexion of the donor knee is reduced.
Arthroscopy 1998 Sep;14(6):580-4
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© 1998 Arthroscopy Association of North America. Published by Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.