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Exploratory Paper

Exploratory Paper - Jean-Baptiste 1 Nick Jean-Baptiste...

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Jean-Baptiste 1 Nick Jean-Baptiste English 1304-14 18 March 2008 Dr. Hoffman The ACL Surgery: Destructive or Innovative? Athletes all around the world go through numerous exercises and activities that put a strain on their knees, especially the Anterior Cruciate Ligament, better known as the ACL. Technically, the ACL is “ a cruciate ligament of each knee that attaches the front of the tibia with the back of the femur and functions especially to prevent hyperextension of the knee and is subject to injury especially by tearing.” (Merriam- Webster). The ACL is one of, if not, the most important ligaments in the body. One of the major functions of the ACL is that it helps keep a person's knee stable when they are performing lateral movements, like shuffling or making a cut. Even though it's one of the most important ligaments, it's also one of the least protected. A simple hit to the side of the knee can tear several muscles, ligaments, and even a meniscus, yet almost 70 percent of the injuries sustained are noncontact. "Researchers at the Cleveland Clinic recently tried to pinpoint how these injuries happen and how they differ in men and women. Using motion-sensor cameras to capture joint movements, the researchers were able to reconstruct the biomechanics as athletes performed drop landings from a 40-cm hang bar. What the researchers discovered is that when the athletes first start jumping, the women are more likely to land on their feet in ways that make them vulnerable to ACL tears. The distance between their knees is narrower, the ankle is more flexed, and the foot rolls outward more. But when the athletes are fatigued, both the men and the women tend to make those same mistakes, placing both groups at high risk for the painful injury." (Gupta 122). It also can be caused by
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Jean-Baptiste 2 landing with your legs straight instead of with your knees bended, which makes the quadriceps muscles absorb the shock brought on by the landing. "Several studies have shown that women are considerably more vulnerable than men to ACL injury. By some estimates, they suffer this injury two to eight times as frequently as men. For years, doctors thought this had something to do with weakness in the joints and ligaments. The evidence, however, doesn't support the notion. What research has shown is that there are inherent anatomical differences between male and female athletes--differences in pelvic width and alignment of the leg bones--that make women more likely to injure their ACL. Unfortunately, these anatomical features can't be modified." (Smith 120). Another reason, though not significant, is that the problems with a person's knee can be genetic. "Having healthy knees means greater mobility as we age, which is why it's important not only to be on guard for sources of potential injury but also to look for signs of risk for osteoarthritis in the knee. A past knee injury or having a parent who has had a knee replacement while in his or her 50s is a clear sign that you are already at risk for wearing out
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Exploratory Paper - Jean-Baptiste 1 Nick Jean-Baptiste...

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