Women have more
anterior cruciate ligament (ACL) injuries than men:
women athletes injure their ACLs up to 8 times as often as men
athletes.1 Experts have identified three areas where
differences between men and women may affect the risk of ACL injuries.
Some studies suggest that the differences in ligament laxity may be due to changing
hormone levels. These studies have shown that there is change in ligament laxity
during the menstrual cycle and that women are at greater risk for an ACL injury
during the ovulatory phase of their cycle than at other times. Other studies have not found a relationship between the menstrual cycle and laxity in the ACL.2 How hormones affect the ACL is not known.
rehabilitation programs for women may take the above factors into account. A
program may include exercises to:
CitationsSeroyer S, West R (2007). Anterior cruciate ligament
section of Injuries specific to the female athlete. In PJ McMahon, ed.,
Current Diagnosis and Treatment in Sports Medicine, pp.
259–260. New York: McGraw-Hill. Honkamp NJ, et al. (2010). Anterior cruciate ligament injuries in adults. In JC DeLee et al., eds., Delee and Drez's Orthopaedic Sports Medicine: Principles and Practice, 3rd ed., vol. 2, pp. 1644–1676. Philadelphia: Saunders Elsevier.
April 5, 2012
William H. Blahd, Jr., MD, FACEP - Emergency Medicine & Freddie H. Fu, MD - Orthopedic Surgery
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