Medial Patellofemoral Ligament (MPFL) Reconstruction Research Perspective

Another research perspective published in Healio on a project led by Banff Sport Medicine Orthopaedic surgeon, Dr Laurie Hiemstra, and Research Director, Sarah Kerslake!

Hiemstra, L. A., & Kerslake, S. (2019). Age at Time of Surgery but Not Sex Is Related to Outcomes After Medial Patellofemoral Ligament Reconstruction. The American Journal of Sports Medicine, 47(7), 1638–1644.

“By stratifying for pathoanatomic risk factors, this study has clarified that females do not have poorer outcomes following [medial patellofemoral ligament] MPFL reconstruction based on their sex,” Laurie Hiemstra, MD, told

“Previous research has correlated female sex with poorer outcomes after patellar stabilization surgery, however females demonstrate a greater number of pathoanatomic risk factors, which adversely influence outcomes. Likewise, individuals who dislocate at a young age are likely to have a greater number of pathoanatomic risk factors.”

Read more about this Perspective here.

Hot off the press research paper!

Read the most recent publication from the Banff Sport Medicine Foundation’s research group.

Hiemstra, L. A., & Kerslake, S. (2019). Age at Time of Surgery but Not Sex Is Related to Outcomes After Medial Patellofemoral Ligament Reconstruction. The American Journal of Sports Medicine


Article synopsis

Patellofemoral instability is a term used to describe a range of injuries that occur when the patella, which is the kneecap, dislocates from its original position. It’s a common knee injury particularly in children and adolescents, whom also have an increased risk of re-dislocating their kneecap after the initial injury, a condition referred to as ‘recurring instability’.

Gender has been proposed to have an influence on patellofemoral instability and potentially recurring instability as well. A medial patellofemoral ligament (MPFL) reconstruction is an accepted surgical procedure that aims to stabilize the patella after injury, particularly in children and adolescents that are at high risk of recurring instability.

This first of its kind study aimed to investigate whether age at the time of surgery or gender influenced patient-reported quality of life and clinical outcome after MPFL reconstruction for recurrent lateral patellofemoral instability.

Overall this study found that “neither age at first dislocation nor sex influences quality of life outcomes after MPFL reconstruction”.

Age at the time of surgery did, however, correlate with outcome. Patients scored lower on a patient-reported disease-specific quality of life and clinical outcome score for each 10-year increase in age at time of surgery. This finding suggests that earlier stabilization of patients presenting with symptomatic recurrent patellofemoral instability may result in better outcomes”.

Banff Sport Medicine Recent Publications

Recent Publications

  • Jordan MJ, Doyle-Baker P, Heard M, Aagaard P, Herzog W. A Retrospective Analysis of Concurrent Pathology in ACL-Reconstructed Knees of Elite Alpine Ski Racers. Orthop J Sports Med. 2017 Jul 10;5(7):2325967117714756.
  • Hiemstra LA, Kerslake S, Arendt EE. Clinical Rehabilitation of Anterior Knee Pain – Current Concepts. Am J Orthop 2017 Mar/Apr;46(2):82-86.
  • Hiemstra, LA, Kerslake, S. Lafave, MR. Quality-of Life Outcomes of Patients following Patellofemoral Stabilization Surgery: The influence of Trochlear Dysplasia. J Knee Surg 2017 Feb. 20
  • Hiemstra, LA, Kerslake, S. Lafave, MR. Medial Patellofemoral Ligament Reconstruction Femoral Tunnel Accuracy: Relationship to Disease-Specific Quality of Life. Orthop J Sports Med 2017 Feb 7;5(2)
  • Hiemstra LA, Kerslake S, O’Brien CL, Lafave MR. Accuracy and Learning Curve of Femoral Tunnel Placement in Medial Patellofemoral Ligament Reconstruction. J Knee Surg 2017 Feb. 13
  • Lafave MR, Hiemstra L, Kerslake S, Heard M, Buchko G. Validity, Reliability, and Responsiveness of the Anterior Cruciate Ligament Quality of Life Measure: A Continuation of Its Overall Validation. Clin J Sport Med. 2017 Jan;27(1):57-63.
  • Hiemstra LA, Kerslake S, Heard M, Buchko G, Lafave M. Outcomes of surgical stabilization in patients with combined ACL deficiency and patellofemoral instability — A case series. Knee. 2016 Dec;23(6):1106-1111. Epub 2016 Oct 31.
  • Yeung M, Leblanc MC, Ayeni OR, Khan M, Hiemstra LA, Kerslake S, Peterson D. Indications for Medial Patellofemoral Ligament Reconstruction: A Systematic Review. J Knee Surg. Oct;29(7):543-554, 2016. Epub 2015 Oct 29.