Rumours are that David Rodan has required a second reconstruction on the knee he injured 12 months ago for which he elected to have the LARS procedure. If true, this would be the first 'mishap' for the recent trend towards LARS reconstructions in AFL footballers, with two of the bigger drawbacks for the procedure being questions on its longevity and the technical challenges of revision surgery. At best Rodan has had arthroscopic surgery, but we should find out in the coming days-weeks the full extent of his injury and recovery.
Knee reco for Rodan?
By Katrina Gill
10:35 AM Tue 30 Nov, 2010
SPECULATION is growing that Port Adelaide midfielder David Rodan has undergone a second LARS reconstruction after injuring his left knee at training on Friday.
The injury occurred in an innocuous incident as Rodan moved to take an uncontested mark during a training drill.
The 27-year-old had revolutionary LARS surgery on the same knee in December last year when he ruptured his anterior cruciate ligament in another pre-season mishap.
He made a remarkable return to the AFL this season, playing 19 games and showcasing all of his trademark speed and elusiveness.
Rodan's former captain, Warren Tredrea, used his Twitter account on Tuesday morning to announce Rodan's surgery: "David Rodan had a knee recon overnight. Poor bloke, rest up, you'll be back!"
It would be Rodan's third reconstruction, with the former Richmond forward having had a traditional reco after damaging his right knee in a pre-season match for the Tigers.
Attempts to contact Port Adelaide officials have been unsuccessful, but the club said on Monday that Rodan would have arthroscopic surgery on his knee this week and that scans had shown the reconstructed ligament was intact.
More to follow
Not sure if he required another reco, but this is not the first time there have been problems with the LARS surgery. One of the main concerns amongst the medical community is the longevity of the LARS.
Another interesting write up:
New surgery for old players
By Katrina Gill
1:47 PM Wed 01 Dec, 2010
PORT Adelaide doctor Mark Fisher says the club will continue to use the controversial LARS procedure on older players requiring knee reconstructions, despite midfielder David Rodan's artificial ligament failing after less than 12 months.
Rodan had a second LARS reconstruction on Monday after an arthroscope revealed the original ligament, which was used to repair the 27-year-old's ruptured ACL last December, had frayed.
The LARS ligament has proven to cut the recovery time in half for a full knee reconstruction compared to the traditional 12-month method, which involves rebuilding the ACL with a graft from the hamstring or patella tendon.
Fisher said the positives of the LARS procedure still outweighed the negatives.
"The traditional ACL graft can rupture and fray as well. In fact the traditional method has a failure rate of up to 20 per cent at AFL level," he said.
"From my understanding the LARS ligament failure or re-do rate is around the 5 per cent mark, so there was no question about what we would do when we decided to redo it … we would use the LARS ligament again."
Forward Brett Ebert, who injured his knee against Melbourne in round 21, is three months into his rehabilitation from the same procedure, and surgeons used a similar LARS-style ligament to aid retired champion Warren Tredrea's recovery from a serious ankle injury last season.
Rodan and Ebert are both in their late 20s, while Tredrea was over 30 and at the end of his career when he had the synthetic ligament inserted into his ankle.
Fisher said he would be reluctant to use the LARS technology on a young player just starting out in the AFL.
"In the general community there have been some younger footballers or sportspeople having the LARS ligament in their late-teens or early 20s, but at AFL level I'd still certainly be sticking with the more traditional method because we still don't know the long-term implications of the LARS," Fisher said.
"Our policy hasn't changed from this time last year. With an older player who might only have a couple of years to go [in his career], we'd probably still go with the LARS ligament.
"We had a good result with David last season, so we don't see any reason to change at this stage."
Rodan was able to play 19 AFL games and complete a full month of pre-season training before the ligament failed and Fisher said the dashing onballer was likely to follow the same rehabilitation program as last time.
"We won't do anything that much different to last year. We're deliberately going fairly conservative anyway," he said.
"The good news was that the condition of David's knee in general was excellent. There was no major reaction to the artificial graft, so we're fairly optimistic that whilst David's starting again he should recover in a similar vein to last year."