Biomechanical evaluation of press-fit femoral fixation technique in ACL reconstruction

Attila Pavlik, Péter Hidas, Tibor Czigány, István Berkes

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20 Citations (Scopus)


In this experimental study, the authors evaluated the biomechanical properties of the femoral press-fit graft fixation technique in ACL reconstruction. 20 fresh frozen distal femurs, patellae and patellar ligaments were used from 10 cadaver specimens. Three bone-patellar tendon grafts of 10 mm width were prepared from each sample; altogether 60 bone-patellar tendon grafts were prepared for the experiment. Three 9 mm wide tunnels were drilled in each distal femur at different angles (0, 15, 30, 45, and 60 degrees). This means that 60 tunnels were drilled into the 20 femurs, 12 at each angle. The trapezoid bone blocks were impacted into the holes. The primary stability and stiffness of this press-fit fixation method were measured with a Zwick 020 computer-controlled testing device using maximum-failure tensile-strength tests. The ultimate tensile strength was the greatest at 45 degrees (534±20 N, range 507-554), with 118±10 N/mm (range 99-126) stiffness, followed by 485±35 N (range 416-510) with 122±13 N/mm (range 104-136) stiffness at 30 degrees, 353±18 N (range 320-371) with 113±13 N/mm (range 83-124) stiffness at 15 degrees, and 312±30 N (range 261-343) with 89±14 N/mm (ranged:68-103) stiffness at 0 degrees. In the cases of 0, 15, 30 and 45 degrees the bone blocks were pulled out of the drilled holes, but at 60 degrees rupture of the patellar tendon or breakage of the bone block occurred more frequently. It can be seen that the ultimate tensile strength increased with the angle between the loading direction and the bone block. When compared to data in the literature, these data showed similar and satisfying biomechanical properties of femoral press-fit fixation. Because of the known advantages of an implantation-free fixation technique, the femoral press-fit fixation technique can be a good alternative in ACL surgery. These results provide the basis for future studies involving the postoperative healing process of this femoral press-fit fixation technique in porcine knees.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)528-533
Number of pages6
JournalKnee Surgery, Sports Traumatology, Arthroscopy
Issue number6
Publication statusPublished - Nov 1 2004


  • Anterior cruciate ligament
  • Patellar tendon graft
  • Press-fit fixation
  • Ultimate tensile strength

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Surgery
  • Orthopedics and Sports Medicine

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