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  Medical Imaging  ←  MRI of the Knee  ←

Phoenix Diagnostic Clinic

The Posterolateral Corner of the Knee

The posterolateral corner (PLC) is a complex functional unit responsible for posterolateral stabilization
• They resist varus angulation, posterior translation and external rotation
• Terms: posterolateral ligamentous complex, arcuate complex

• Not consistently defined in the literature

Most descriptions include:
popliteal tendon (PT)
lateral collateral ligament (LCL)
popliteofibular ligament (PFL)
• posterolateral capsule - reinforced by the arcuate ligament (AL) and
the fabellofibular ligament (FFL)
PLC : injury and clinical impact
An overlooked injury:
– Chronic pain
– Osteoarthritis
– Outcome of ACL reconstruction

MR diagnostic:
– Direct signs
– Indirect signs (associated injuries)

Mechanism of injury

High-energy trauma
• Direct or indirect mechanism
• Varus forces
• Valgus forces
• External rotation forces

Imaging Diagnosis
An early and correct diagnosis of PLC injuries is mandatory
• Arthroscopy
evaluation of PT, lateral meniscus and cartilage
• Magnetic Resonance Imaging is the method of choise
Trauma with external rotation
Injuries of PLC

Clinical examination:
• Can overlook a PLC injury
• Difficult in acute phase (pain, edema)
• Difficult in the presence of associated injuries
• Accuracy decrease with no of lesions
Miller TT. AJR 1997; 169:1641-1647
Trauma with external rotation
 MR findings:
 • Same with other ligamentous injuries
 • Edema, blood, discontinuity – partial tear, complete tear, hematoma
Knee trauma after a varus injuryKnee trauma after a varus injuryKnee trauma after a varus injury
55-year-old patient with knee trauma after a varus injury
next page  →  Associated lesions

October 18, 2009

Phoenix Diagnostic Clinic, Bucharest

This site is primarily intended for use by qualified medical or sport professionals.
If you are a consumer, you should evaluate the information together with your physician or other qualified healthcare professional.
The information provided here is for educational and informational purposes only and should not be considered as a medical advice.
As medical and sport science is permanently changing, we (authors and publishers) use our best efforts to provide accurate information, but we can not warrant that the information in this article and web site is accurate, complete or up-to-date.
This article reflects the opinions and judgments of it's author and may be further updated.
If you have questions regarding this article, please contact the author.
Information belongs to Phoenix Diagnostic Clinic, Bucharest

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