Return to sports (RTS) clearance after anterior cruciate ligament (ACL) reconstruction typically includes multiple assessments. The ability of these tests to assess the risk of a reinjury remains unknown.
To assess and rate RTS self-reported function and functional tests on prognostic value for reinjury risk after ACL reconstruction and RTS. Study Design: Systematic review on level 2 studies.
PubMed, Web of Knowledge, Cochrane Library, and Google Scholar databases were searched for articles published before March 2018. Original articles in English or German that examined reinjury risks/rates after primary (index) ACL injury, ACL reconstruction, and RTS were included. All RTS functional tests used in the included studies were analyzed by retrieving an effect size with predictive value (odds ratio, relative risk (risk ratio), positive predictive value, positive likelihood ratio, or hazard rate).
A total of 276 potential studies were found; eight studies (moderate to high quality) on 6140 patients were included in the final analysis. The reinjury incidence recorded in the included studies ranged from 1.5% to 37.5%. Four studies reported a combination of isokinetic quadriceps strength at different velocities and a number of hop tests as predictive with various effect sizes. One reported isokinetic hamstring to quadriceps ratio (hazard rate = 10.6) as predictive. Two studies reported functional questionnaires (knee injury and osteoarthritis outcome score and Tampa Scale of Kinesiophobia-11; RR = 3.7–13) and one study showed that kinetic and kinematic measures during drop vertical jumps were predictive (odds ratio, 2.3–8.4) for reinjury and/or future revision surgery.
Based on level 2 evidence, passing a combination of functional tests with predetermined cutoff points used as RTS criteria is associated with reduced reinjury rates. A combination of isokinetic strength and hop tests is recommended during RTS testing.