Reconstruction of the lateral ankle ligaments. A biomechanical analysis

M. R. Colville, Richard A Marder, B. Zarins

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

106 Scopus citations

Abstract

The purpose of this study was to perform a biomechanical analysis of several commonly performed operative procedures used to stabilize the lateral ankle. We performed the Evans, Watson-Jones, and Chrisman-Snook procedures on 15 cadaveric ankles and tested the ankles for stability, motion, and isometry of graft placement. The Evans procedure allowed increased anterior displacement, internal rotation, and tilt of the talus when compared to ankles with intact ligaments. Subtalar joint motion was restricted by the Evans procedure. The Watson-Jones procedure controlled internal rotation and anterior displacement of the talus, but was less effective in controlling talar tilt and also restricted subtalar joint motion. The Chrisman-Snook procedure allowed increased internal rotation and anterior displacement of the talus when compared to ankles with intact ligaments. The procedure was effective in limiting talar tilt, but restricted subtalar joint motion. Based on the biomechanical data obtained, we devised a lateral ankle reconstruction with bone tunnels that reproduce the anatomic orientation of both the anterior talofibular and calcaneofibular ligaments. This ankle ligament reconstruction resists anterior displacement, internal rotation, and talar tilt without restricting subtalar joint motion. Clinical relevance: We found considerable mechanical differences among the more commonly performed lateral ankle reconstructions. It is possible to locate bone tunnels and graft placement so that a more anatomic configuration is achieved.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)594-600
Number of pages7
JournalAmerican Journal of Sports Medicine
Volume20
Issue number5
StatePublished - 1992
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Orthopedics and Sports Medicine
  • Public Health, Environmental and Occupational Health
  • Physical Therapy, Sports Therapy and Rehabilitation

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