Biologic Approaches for the Treatment of Partial Tears of the Anterior Cruciate Ligament: A Current Concepts Review

Ignacio Dallo, Jorge Chahla, Justin J. Mitchell, Cecilia Pascual-Garrido, John A. Feagin, Robert F. LaPrade

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

39 Scopus citations


Background: Anterior cruciate ligament reconstruction (ACLR) has been established as the gold standard for treatment of complete ruptures of the anterior cruciate ligament (ACL) in active, symptomatic individuals. In contrast, treatment of partial tears of the ACL remains controversial. Biologically augmented ACL-repair techniques are expanding in an attempt to regenerate and improve healing and outcomes of both the native ACL and the reconstructed graft tissue. Purpose: To review the biologic treatment options for partial tears of the ACL. Study Design: Review. Methods: A literature review was performed that included searches of PubMed, Medline, and Cochrane databases using the following keywords: partial tear of the ACL, ACL repair, bone marrow concentrate, growth factors/healing enhancement, platelet-rich plasma (PRP), stem cell therapy. Results: The use of novel biologic ACL repair techniques, including growth factors, PRP, stem cells, and bioscaffolds, have been reported to result in promising preclinical and short-term clinical outcomes. Conclusion: The potential benefits of these biological augmentation approaches for partial ACL tears are improved healing, better proprioception, and a faster return to sport and activities of daily living when compared with standard reconstruction procedures. However, long-term studies with larger cohorts of patients and with technique validation are necessary to assess the real effect of these approaches.

Original languageEnglish
JournalOrthopaedic Journal of Sports Medicine
Issue number1
StatePublished - Jan 25 2017


  • anterior cruciate ligament repair
  • bone marrow aspirate concentrate
  • healing enhancement
  • partial anterior cruciate ligament tear
  • platelet-rich plasma
  • stem cell therapy


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