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Motor control after anterior cruciate ligament reconstruction

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Title Motor control after anterior cruciate ligament reconstruction
Period 01 / 2005 - 03 / 2015
Status Completed
Dissertation Yes
Research number OND1309390
Data Supplier Website BCN

Abstract

Almost every week, there is a report in the media that a well-known athlete has torn the anterior cruciate ligament (ACL) of the knee. Although often regarded necessary, ACL reconstruction does not guarantee a normal knee function. Many patients do not return to competitive sports, have a higher risk of re-injury and develop degeneration of the cartilage of the knee joint at a young age. The first aim of this research was to examine how the knee moves after surgery. The results showed that patients put less weight on the knee during walking and jumping. Unfortunately, patients who do not move the knee in a normal way, have an increased risk to tear the ACL again. Therefore, the second and most important purpose of this study, was to find an explanation for this behaviour. A theory was developed that patients have an increased attention on movement (internal focus) of the knee which affects the learning process to regain normal movements. An external focus means that attention is directed toward the results of the movement. To further test this theory, patients were placed in a virtual reality setting in order to distract them from their conscious control of the knee. The results showed that movement of the knee in patients can be favourably influenced. This thesis indicates room for a paradigm change to guide rehabilitation. Future rehabilitation that incorporates instructions with an external attentional focus may decrease the risk of tearing the ACL again and delay the onset of wear and tear of the knee.

Related organisations

Related people

Supervisor Prof.dr. P.U. Dijkstra
Supervisor Prof.dr. E. Otten
Supervisor Prof.dr. K. Postema
Doctoral/PhD student Dr. A. Gokeler

Classification

A70000 Public health and health care
D21100 Bioinformatics, biomathematics, biomechanics
D23210 Dermatology, venereology, rheumatology, orthopedics

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