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Introduction: Injury to the posterolateral corner (PLC) of the knee often requires surgical reconstruction. There remains no consensus on treatment for PLC injury, and, therefore, it is imperative to have a reproducible injury model to improve the general knowledge of PLC injuries. A novel cadaveric model of isolated PLC injury is proposed and evaluated using radiographic parameters as well as gross dissection.

Material and methods: All protocols were reviewed by the Human Investigation and Research Committee of the home institution and were approved. Translational force in a defined posterior and lateral direction was applied to cadaveric native knees to induce PLC injury. Varus and recurvatum stress fluoroscopic imaging was obtained of each specimen before and after the injury model. Lateral joint distance and recurvatum angle after stress was measured on each image via picture archiving and communication software (PACS) imaging software. After the injury model, injured structures were assessed via saline loading and gross dissection. Any specimens found to be fractured were excluded from the analysis of stress radiography.

Results: A total of 12 knees underwent testing and 6/12 successfully induced PLC injury without fracture. The lateral capsule was torn in every specimen. The popliteofibular ligament (PFL) was torn in 83% of specimens and the fibular collateral ligament (FCL) in 66.7% of specimens. The median lateral gapping after injury under varus stress radiography was 5.39 mm and the median recurvatum angle after injury was 14.25°. Radiographic parameters had a direct relationship with a number of structures injured.

Conclusions: This is the first successful cadaver model of PLC injury. The lateral capsule was injured in every specimen emphasizing the importance of this structure to the PLC.


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