Men have a greater number of knee ligament injuries than women, despite research suggesting that women's knees are more prone to anterior cruciate ligament (ACL) tears and surgeries to fix them, says an article by Reuters based on study in American Journal of Sports Medicine.
For this study, researchers included knee injuries across the entire Swedish population, not just among players of particular sports or in certain regions. They used a nationwide database of patients to see how many Swedes had knee ligament injuries and how many had surgical repairs between 2002 and 2009. Overall, 56,659 people in Sweden tore a knee ligament during the 7-year study period—an average of 78 tears for every 100,000 Swedish citizens.
Men accounted for about 34,000 of the tears, or 60%. Men also had 59% of the reconstructive surgeries associated with knee ligament injuries.
Swedish women tended to experience ACL injuries at a younger age—between the ages of 11 and 20, versus 21 to 30 for men.
When the researchers looked just at the age groups with the highest injury rates, men still had far more knee troubles. The numbers worked out to about 144 tears per 100,000 women between 11 and 20 years old, and 225 tears per 100,000 men aged 21 to 30.
Darin Padua, director of the Sports Medicine Research Laboratory at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, said he was not surprised by the findings. Padua, who was not involved with the research, added that the results help to show that both men and women should be taking part in injury prevention programs, the article says.