Discovery of New Knee Ligament
Anatomists in Belgium have reported the discovery of a new knee ligament. Actually, it’s been there all along, even documented by a guy back in 1879 wrote about it, but it’s so small that got buried under a pile of new anatomical discoveries until now.
It’s called the anteriolateral ligament. It sits at the front of the knee toward the outside. It attaches to the femur superiorly at the lateral collateral ligament attachment and distally to the tibia lateral to Gerty’s tubercle. It acts to stabilize the outer part of the knee, preventing it from collapsing inward.
And here’s why it important. It reinforces the actions of the ACL – the anterior cruciate ligament. This ligament is probably most famous for the injurious tear that results from slowing down suddenly to change direction or pivot with the foot firmly planted, twisting or hyperextending the knee.
Positioned at the front of the knee, it (the ALL) would be vulnerable to tearing when an A.C.L. was injured; the same forces would move through both ligaments.
For those who have had an ACL repair and appear to be healthy but continue to experience knee instability or buckling, the ALL may be the culprit. Based upon the research of Drs. Claes and Bellemans, ALL repair may help ACL repairs restore full stability and function to the affected knee. Further research needs to be conducted to find out if this ligament can actually heal.