Medial Patellofemoral Ligament Reconstruction
If recurrent patella dislocation occurs in spite of non-surgical treatment, medial patellofemoral ligament (MPFL) reconstruction may be indicated. MPFL reconstruction is a procedure that rebuilds the ligament connecting the medial (inner) side of the patella (kneecap) to the medial side of the femur at the knee. The MPFL acts as a “checkrein” that prevents the patella from shifting laterally out of the trochlear groove.
The surgery is usually performed through two small incisions, one over the medial border of the patella, and one over the medial side of the femur. A tendon graft is then attached to precise positions on the two bones using sutures and small implants. Knee arthroscopy is usually performed in the same setting to assess and treat any associated injuries inside the knee joint.
MPFL reconstruction is an outpatient surgery. Patients go home the same day with a knee brace. The brace is worn for 4-6 weeks, but may be removed for bathing and physical therapy. Most patients are allowed to return to athletic activities by 4-6 months after surgery.