Jenna: Well, right now, a medical breakthrough, apparently, doctors discovering a brand new body part, a brand new knee ligament that no one knew that we had. And some are suggesting that this may help improve future knee surgeries, which could be better for everybody. Joining us now, Dr. Ron Noy. He’s the founder of Prestige Orthopedic and Sports Medicine. He’s also an orthopedic surgeon, so he’s the right guy to talk to about this. Doc, the first thing that you think about when you read this headline, “A New Knee Ligament,” one wonders, “What? How did we not know about this new ligament for so many years?”
Dr. Noy: Well, we knew about a ligament being there. It’s been there for a hundred years. It’s been talked about. It just hasn’t been thought to be important. There’s some doctors in Belgium, Dr. Claes, in particular, who was very interested in why some patients continue to have instability with rotation after ACL reconstruction.
Jenna: And “some patients,” you might mean some patients that have had repeated knee surgeries, like my co-partner in crime, John Scott, who’s had a few in his life. And so they think that potentially when you get your ACL repaired, which is a popular surgery, the reason why you can keep coming back is because this is not being addressed?
Dr. Noy: Well, that’s the theory that he was trying to prove. They did a bunch of studies after his finding about this ligament in the literature. Then they dissected a bunch of cadavers and found that it existed in 97% of the cadavers that they found. But really only 80% of them were torn on the ACLs that they actually did.
Jenna: So you have a knee with you? I mean, you have the two that you brought with you, but you have one in your hand.
Dr. Noy: Right.
Jenna: So can you show a little bit about where this actually is?
Dr. Noy: Right. So if this is the normal model of the knee, you have your ACL in the middle, and you have your lateral collateral ligament on the side. This one would actually go from where the lateral collateral ligament goes to the tibia, so it actually joins the femur and the tibia, the two main bones in the knee, on the side.
Jenna: So when you’re doing surgery, would you repair this normally? Is this something that you would see and say, “Oh, that’s broken”? No?
Dr. Noy: No, sorry. Yeah, no, you wouldn’t see it because now we do everything in the joint through scopes. It’s called arthroscopic.
Dr. Noy: So you’re doing the ACL right in the middle of the knee. You wouldn’t see anything outside the knee.
Jenna: So how big of a deal is this?
Dr. Noy: I think it’s going to be a little bit of deal. Because what they’re saying is, if they tear this structure, you have a lot of instability. But they also showed that 80% of these are torn in the middle. Usually, when we do an ACL reconstruction, we’re rehabbing the knee for four weeks before the surgery. My feeling is most of these are going to actually heal before you do the surgery. So if you do the ACL surgery correctly, you’re going to be fine because 95% of patients that have ACL reconstructions done correctly do completely well now.
Jenna: I was mentioning John’s knee surgeries, he’s nodding his head right now, but women actually are really affected, a majority, from ACL surgeries, aren’t they? It really affects women a lot as well.
Dr. Noy: They have a higher incidence, especially soccer and basketball players.
Jenna: So just because John is the example on set doesn’t mean he’s the example overall. It’s great to have you, Doc. Thank you so much.
Dr. Noy: My pleasure.
Jenna: It’s an interesting story. I appreciate it. John, your knee’s feeling okay today, though?
John: Yeah, well, after that segment, I’m starting to wonder. Three ACLs in my world and a few other lesser knee surgeries.
Jenna: Yikes. You’re walking great, John, though. No one would ever know.
John: Actually I’m not, but thank you, Jenna. We are awaiting a key vote on a Republican plan to fix Obamacare. We will fill you in on what’s in that plan next, plus a health alert to tell you about. A rise in tuberculosis cases being reported across the country, what you need to know about this outbreak.