The Anterior Cruciate Ligament ( Acl )

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Background
The anterior cruciate ligament (ACL) is a strong rope-like structure that runs through the center of the knee connecting the femur to the tibia. An ACL prevents the femur from moving anteriorly while weight bearing, helps prevent rotation of the joint and is the primary stabilizing structure of the knee and its integrity is essential for walking and any physical activities (Sports Medicine Australia, 2015). An ACL sprain or tear is one of the most common knee injuries, especially among athletes who engage in high demanding sports including football, soccer and basketball. This is the case as this type of injury is likely to occur when; turning/twisting rapidly, stopping suddenly, landing awkwardly when jumping, slowing down
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When the ACL tears, it cannot heal on its own and surgery is necessary for the knee to return to its normal function. It is common that other structures in the knee will be affected alongside an ACL injury such as the meniscus, other ligaments in the knee or the articular cartilage which would also need addressing during the surgical procedure (Parker, 2014).

There are tests designed to diagnose ACL tears including the Lachman Test which involves the therapist stabilizing the femur while the knee is flexed, and applying a posteroanterior pull on the tibia along the plane of the joint (Petty, 2011). This paper will discuss the Lachman’s test, how it is applied clinically and the relevance and reliability of the technique itself. John W. Lachman, chairman and professor of orthopedic surgery at Temple University, founded the Lachman Test (Torg, Conrad, & Kalen, 2012).
Assessment
Method
The patient lies supine with the leg to be tested, beside the examiner. The examiner holds the patient’s knee between full extension and 30 degrees of flexion. The patient’s femur is stabilised with one of the examiner’s hands while the proximal aspect of the tibia is moved posterioranteriorly (forward) with the other hand. (Magee, 2008 p. 768) There are also a number of commonly used modifications to the above technique. The examiner should select the method which they find most effective. These include;

1. Patient sits with their legs over the edge of the plinth. The
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