Anterior cruciate ligament (ACL) rupture is a disastrous injury that frequently affects active and young individuals. The impact of ACL deficiency (ACLD) on the knee and the individual is not fully understood.
It has been suggested that altered knee joint motion in ACL deficient knee is associated with tibiofemoral loading imbalance and disruptions to the screw home mechanism of the knee. Proprioceptive deficits in the knee joint and impaired motor imagery performance (MIP) are also suspected, along with psychological impairments, such as kinesiophobia. These biomechanical, physical and psychological impairments have not been well researched in individuals with an ACLD and may contribute to the development of osteoarthritic changes post injury and poor prognosis.
The primary aim of this thesis is to identify kinetic, kinematic and motor imagery deficits among individuals with chronic ACLD that may be related to the development of knee OA.
The results of this thesis showed that individuals with chronic ACLD did not demonstrate any significant difference in MIP or kinetic and kinematic variables during stance phase of gait, except for the coordination pattern at midstance. This thesis also showed that kinesiophobia has an effect on knee function in individuals with ACLD. Lastly, the novel yet simple instrument known as KLICP (knee laxity in coronal plane) which was developed to measure knee laxity in coronal plane, may have the potential to quantify knee joint frontal plane laxity although further refinement is warranted.