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Knee News

Making Dollars and "Sense" of ACL Surgery

Choosing between types of medical treatments requires a careful look at which treatments are most cost-effective. The yardstick to measure whether a treatment is cost-effective has to do with quality of life and the costs to achieve it.

Not everyone with a torn anterior cruciate ligament (ACL) requires surgery. But people who participate in high-level recreation and sports activities usually believe that that their quality of life would be poor if a knee problem kept them from taking part in the sports they enjoy. While surgery for a torn ACL can be expensive, it can help young, active patients remain active. In this respect, ACL surgeries for many young, active people make sense--the surgery is cost-effective.

Cost-effectiveness is also influenced by the overall results of treatment. Doctors rely on various tests to measure the outcomes of surgery. Treatment results are also determined by how well a person is able to function with activity. When people can better participate in their regular activities, they feel a greater sense of well-being and satisfaction--important ingredients of a successful treatment outcome. As technology advances and as doctors learn new and better ways to do ACL surgery, these outcomes will improve. As a result, it is likely that ACL surgery will continue to become even more cost-effective.

Charles A. Gottlob, MD & Champ L. Baker, Jr., MD. Anterior Cruciate Ligament Reconstruction: Socioeconomic Issues and Cost Effectiveness. In The American Journal of Orthopedics. June 2000. Vol. 29. No. 6. Pp. 472-476.


*Disclaimer:* The information contained herein is compiled from a variety of sources. It may not be complete or timely. It does not cover all diseases, physical conditions, ailments or treatments. The information should NOT be used in place of visit with your healthcare provider, nor should you disregard the advice of your health care provider because of any information you read in this topic.
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