Association Between Neuromuscular Variables and Graft Harvest in Soft Tissue Quadriceps Tendon Versus Bone–Patellar Tendon–Bone Anterior Cruciate Ligament Autografts

Michael Letter, Andrew Beauperthuy, Rosalia L. Parrino, Kevin Posner, Michael G. Baraga, Thomas M. Best, Lee Kaplan, Moataz Eltoukhy, Keri L. Strand, Andrew Buskard, Joseph F. Signorile

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract

Background: Quadriceps tendon (QT) autografts are increasingly popular for anterior cruciate ligament reconstruction (ACLR). However, no study has compared QT autografts with bone–patellar tendon–bone (BTB) autografts regarding the electromechanical delay (EMD), the peak torque (PT), and the rate of force development (RFD) in the superficial quadriceps muscles (rectus femoris [RF], vastus medialis [VM], and vastus lateralis [VL]). Hypotheses: We hypothesized (1) there would be a significantly lower PT, lower RFD, and longer quadriceps EMD of the operative limb for the QT versus the BTB autograft; (2) the PT, the RFD, and the quadriceps EMD of the operative limb would be significantly depressed compared with those of the nonoperative limb, regardless of the surgical technique; and (3) there would be greater increases in the RF EMD than in the VM or the VL EMD. Study Design: Cohort study; Level of evidence, 3. Methods: A total of 34 patients (age, 18-40 years), who had undergone ACLR (QT, n = 17; BTB, n = 17) at least 1 year before testing and performed 3 perceived maximal effort isometric tests, which were time synchronized with surface electromyography (EMG) on their operative and nonoperative limbs, were included in this study. EMD, PT, and RFD data were analyzed using a 2 (limb) × 2 (graft) × 3 (repetition) mixed repeated-measures analysis of variance. Results: The EMD, the PT, and the RFD were not significantly affected by graft choice. For the VL, a significant repetition × graft × limb interaction was detected for the VL EMD (P =.027; ηp = 0.075), with repetition 3 having longer EMD than repetition 2 (mean difference [MD], 16 milliseconds; P =.039). For the RF EMD, there was a significant repetition × limb interaction (P =.027; ηp = 0.074), with repetition 3 being significantly longer on the operative versus the nonoperative limb (MD, 24 milliseconds; P =.004). Further, the operative limb EMD was significantly longer for repetition 3 versus repetition 2 (MD, 17 milliseconds; P =.042). For the PT, there was a significant effect for repetition (P =.003; ηp = 0.114), with repetition 1 being significantly higher than both repetitions 2 (MD, 8.52 N·m; P =.001) and 3 (MD, 7.79 N·m; P =.031). For the RFD, significant limb (P =.034; ηp = 0.092) and repetition (P =.010; ηp = 0.093) effects were seen, with the nonoperative limb being significantly faster than the operative limb (MD, 23.7 N·m/s; P =.034) and repetition 1 being significantly slower than repetitions 2 (MD, -20.46 N·m/s; P =.039) or 3 (MD, −29.85 N·m/s; P =.002). Conclusion: The EMD, the PT, and the RFD were not significantly affected by graft type when comparing QT and BTB autografts for ACLR; however, all neuromuscular variables were affected regardless of the QT or the BTB harvest.

Original languageEnglish (US)
JournalOrthopaedic Journal of Sports Medicine
Volume9
Issue number10
DOIs
StatePublished - 2021

Keywords

  • arthroscopy
  • electromyography
  • isometric
  • knee

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Orthopedics and Sports Medicine

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