When I began my Orthopaedic Sportsmedicine practice in 1985 ACL reconstruction was generally reserved for young athletes. Over the years the acceptable age for reconstruction has gradually increased. Several studies have shown good outcomes in patients in their 50s. But what about even older individuals? There has been very little data in patients over 60 years of age. However a recent European study looked at a cohort of a dozen patients between 60 and 63 years of age with no significant arthritic changes in their knee at presentation. All patients had restoration of knee stability by ACLR, with no major complications. 10 of 12 patients resumed their prior sports activities. Follow-up was 2-6 years and there was no significant progression of arthritis. Ratings were greatly improved overall. While all patients in their 60s are not candidates this study shows that for a selected group in this age range ACL reconstruction is beneficial.
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A very knowledgeable patient told me just this week about a stem cell group whose well-produced promotional materials had greatly impressed him. They were treating a variety of diseases with great success he felt. I looked into them for him at his request. I found that they were using techniques that are not FDA approved. And unfortunately there had been multiple serious health problems in patients treated by them.