Volume 5, Issue 10 (November 2008)
Does Laterality Exist in ACL Injury Prevalence in Alpine Skiers?
From a clinical viewpoint, a greater number of ACL injuries have been observed involving the left knee than the right knee; however, the evidence is still limited. The purpose of the first study in this two-part investigation was to demonstrate whether laterality of ACL injury exists in various sports activities, including alpine skiing. We hypothesized that the incidence of left knee ACL injury would be higher than that of right knee injury. In the second study, a knee kinematic analysis during a trunk-turning test was conducted to demonstrate the laterality of knee kinematics in female alpine skiers. Subjects for the first study were ACL patients who visited Hiroshima University Hospital between 1994 and 2004. For the alpine skiers, the injury side, the mechanism of injury, and the turning side at the moment of injury were also determined. In the second study, the participants were female recreational skiers who had no history of an ACL injury. Kinematic analyses with a high-speed camera were conducted to measure the knee, hip, and trunk angles during the trunk-turning test. In alpine skiers, 194 (57 %) left ACL injuries and 146 (43 %) right ACL injures were observed. However, there were no significant differences in knee flexion angle during the trunk-turning test. Our findings showed that a left ACL injury occurred 33 % more frequently than a right knee ACL injury in alpine skiers. In addition, we found no differences in the knee flexion angle during the trunk-turning test; however, the height of left shoulder appeared to be higher than the right shoulder during the right turn.