ACL reconstruction better financial option than rehabilitation

Posted on: November 4th, 2013 by Dr. Geoffrey S. Van Thiel

A study recently published in the Journal of Bone and Joint Surgery found that ACL reconstruction saved society about $50,000 per patient when compared to ACL rehabilitation alone.

Not only did the study demonstrate financial canada goose Trillium Parka savings for society, but ACL reconstruction also improved patient quality-adjusted life years by .72.

“This is the first study to demonstrate the importance of a societal perspective when considering the costs and benefits of anterior cruciate ligament repair and policies,” Lane Koenig, PhD, study author, said in a press release from the American Academy of Orthopedic Surgeons.

An ACL reconstruction cost society $38,121 on average while ACL rehabilitation cost $88,538. Annually, reconstruction cost $7.6 billion compared to $17.7 billion for rehabilitation.

“Going forward without an ACL pa natet reconstruction shows that there are risks that can be prevented by reconstruction” said Geoff Van Thiel, MD, of Rockford Orthopedic Associates sports medicine specialty. “Cartilage issues are more prevalent and difficult to deal with in people who have torn an ACL, online so in terms of cost to online slots the patient and society, reconstruction is the best canada goose Victoria Parka option.”

The study also found that patients treated with rehabilitation have higher incidences of developing radiographic osteoarthritis, symptomatic osteoarthritis, or would eventually need a total knee arthroplasty.

“We are starting to believe that people without an ACL have a higher risk of developing other issues,” Van Thiel said.

Orthopedic specialists are experiencing greater pressure to demonstrate cost efficiency in the face of rising healthcare costs. The initial up front costs often prevent back end costs, which is especially important for young patients, who experience ACL tears, and for an increasingly activate population.

“In younger patients, I always recommend ACL reconstruction. I don’t necessarily believe in non-operative management of a tear for young patients,” a sentiment echoed by study author Mininder Kocher, MD, of Boston Children’s Hospital Division of Sports Medicine.

That said, Geoff Van Thiel also acknowledged that non-operative treatment for an ACL tear has its place as well. People with cartilage loss or other conditions on top of an ACL injury may benefit more from a conservative approach.

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