LARS (Ligament Augmentation and Reconstruction System) ligaments are artificial ligaments used for the intra or extra-articular reconstruction of ruptured ligaments. LARS ligaments are used to reconstruct a torn ACL and are designed to mimic the normal anatomic ligament fibres in the knee. The intra-articular longitudinal fibres resist fatigue and allow fibroblastic growth. The extra-articular woven fibres provide strength and resistance to stretch.
LARS ligaments can be used in conjunction with suturing to the remaining section of the ruptured ligament, or as a stand-alone reconstruction.
LARS ligaments can be used to reconstruct both the anterior and posterior cruciate ligaments.
For each patient the LARS ligaments are precisely selected according to the weight and activity level of each indivdual patient.
Using LARS ligaments can reduce surgery time considerably as no additional harvesting of grafts is needed. Thus the patient can expect a faster return to full function compared with ACL reconstruction using hamstrings or patella tendon grafts. This is largely due to LARS ligaments allowing the original ligament tissues to heal in the absence of traction.
Advantages of LARS:
Using LARS ligaments ACL surgery can be performed using minimally invasive surgery (All-Inside ACL Reconstruction), which involves a smaller incision than the conventional ACL surgery. There are no donor site complications since there is no need to harvest hamstring tendons or patella tendons.
To place the graft in place, tunnels will be drilled precisely through the remnants of the original ACL using an arthroscopic technique. The ligament is pulled into the bony tunnels whilst it is observed through an endoscope. The LARS ligament should pass through the centre of the original ACL. Once in place the LARS ligament is covered by native tissue and fixed with two titanium screws.
The surgical time is expected to take between one and two hours.