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The Male/Female Difference In ACL Injuries

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  • The Male/Female Difference In ACL Injuries

    Some weeks ago I posted a link to a news article about disparate injury vulnerabilities of young female athlete, especially with reference to the ACL. This evoked from the board (bored?) a collective yawn.

    Now I see the front page has a link which is the subject of this thread. Too bad the link seems to be broken. Perhaps that could be fixed.

  • #2
    Second...

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    • #3
      most likely has to do with very simple physiological differences assoc. with weight and body composition.
      ... nothing really ever changes my friend, new lines for old, new lines for old.

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      • #4
        From a mechanical standpoint, I believe the difference might be directly related to the Q angle difference between the sexes. If memory serves me correctly, I believe women's average Q angle is somewhere in the 15 degree range, where as men is somewhere around 5 degrees. Women soccer players are notorious for having ACL problems. I can't tell you how many girl/women soccer players I've seen over the years wearing knee braces due to ACL blowouts or instability.

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        • #5
          Originally posted by paulthefan
          most likely has to do with very simple physiological differences assoc. with weight and body composition.
          Not so fast my friend. The disparity in ACL tears among women has been studied now for at least 20 years and nobody is exactly sure why it occurs. A number of hypotheses are out there - changes in the female Q-angle (angle of femur to the tibia effectively), smaller size intra-articular notch in females, hormonal problems and differences (there has been some association with tears during certain periods of the menstrual cycle), weaker thigh musculature in women (probably less common now with better training), and a number of other factors, but nobody is really certain why it occurs. Quite perplexing is that after ACL reconstruction, women still have a higher rate of re-tear than men do, despite the fact that the same materials and techniques are used on each. In terms of better training and coaching techniques to decrease the incidence in women, this is also controversial. There are studies that show it helps and others that show there is no difference in the incidence. Although I don't really do any knee surgery anymore, at the AAOS Annual Meeting last February I had a meal with several of my sports medicine buddies and they started discussing this topic. The consensus was a collective shrug of the shoulders as in "We still don't understand it."

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          • #6
            A nice roundup

            http://athletics.mcgill.ca/sportsmed...article_id=893

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            • #7
              Originally posted by paulthefan
              most likely has to do with very simple physiological differences assoc. with weight and body composition.
              Originally posted by Kurt Francis
              From a mechanical standpoint, I believe the difference might be directly related to the Q angle difference between the sexes. If memory serves me correctly, I believe women's average Q angle is somewhere in the 15 degree range, where as men is somewhere around 5 degrees.
              I love you guys! :lol: If only we could direct all this intellectual horsepower towards finding a cure for cancer, we might all live long enough to see Usain Bolt's records broken. :wink:

              BTW, about 18 hours later and the front page link is still screwed up.

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              • #8
                Originally posted by bambam
                Originally posted by paulthefan
                most likely has to do with very simple physiological differences assoc. with weight and body composition.
                Not so fast my friend. ... but nobody is really certain why it occurs. ... The consensus was a collective shrug of the shoulders as in "We still don't understand it."
                I always trust orthopedic surgeons from Durham.

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                • #9
                  [quote=George P.]
                  Originally posted by paulthefan
                  most likely has to do with very simple physiological differences assoc. with weight and body composition.
                  Originally posted by "Kurt Francis":167ac9at
                  From a mechanical standpoint, I believe the difference might be directly related to the Q angle difference between the sexes. If memory serves me correctly, I believe women's average Q angle is somewhere in the 15 degree range, where as men is somewhere around 5 degrees.
                  I love you guys! :lol: If only we could direct all this intellectual horsepower towards finding a cure for cancer, we might all live long enough to see Usain Bolt's records broken. :wink:

                  BTW, about 18 hours later and the front page link is still screwed up.[/quote:167ac9at]

                  Well, I'm not a chemist or a doctor...just your ordinary run-of-the-mill mechanical engineer with an electrical background. I have had some indirect experience with the medical field in that at my former company I designed/re-designed vibratory filter/dryers for pharmaceutical applications. Everyone here would recognize the names of some of my former company's clients. As for a cure for cancer, there are all kinds of cancers, and I certainly doubt I'll live to see a cure for any of them. Given my family history, I'll most certainly die of cancer if I live long enough. Not going to worry about it, though.

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                  • #10
                    Hey, how can an article about my hockey team be considered screwed up?! :-)

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                    • #11
                      Originally posted by gh
                      Hey, how can an article about my hockey team be considered screwed up?! :-)
                      Yeah, I was about to say that I know a whole lot more about some Bay Area ice hockey team than I did before (or actually cared to).

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