The Journal of Arthroplasty, Volume 34, Issue 10, 2383 - 2387

Does Recession of the Posterior Cruciate Ligament Influence Outcome in Total Knee Arthroplasty?

Dion, Charles-Antoine B. et al.
Knee

Background

For a PCL-retaining (posterior cruciate ligament) total knee arthroplasty (TKA) to function suitably, proper soft tissue balancing, including PCL recession, is required. Yet, when the recession of the PCL is needed, there is still a debate as to whether a cruciate-retaining (CR) TKA should be converted to a posterior-stabilized TKA due to the concern of instability and poorer clinical outcomes. The purpose of this study is to determine whether recession of the PCL adversely affects clinical outcomes in patients who undergo CR TKA.

Methods

CR TKAs of the same design performed by the senior author (J.M.) were identified between December 2006 and July 2015. Clinical outcome measurements were collected and included the Western Ontario and McMaster Universities Osteoarthritis Index score, the Knee Society Clinical Rating System, Short Form-12 Physical Composite Score/Mental Health Composite Score, and revision rates.

Results

There were no significant differences in clinical outcome when the PCL was retained, partially recessed, or completely released during PCL-retaining TKA (Western Ontario and McMaster Universities Osteoarthritis Index: P = .54, Knee Society Clinical Rating System: P = .42, Short Form-12 Mental Health Composite Score: P = .89, Short Form-12 Physical Composite Score: P = .527).

Conclusion

This study presents evidence of similar clinical outcomes when the PCL is retained or released during PCL-retaining TKA, provided attention is paid to appropriate soft tissue balancing. CR TKA undergoing partial or complete release of the PCL should not routinely be converted to a posterior-stabilized knee design.

Level of Evidence

Level II, Prognostic study.

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