Like many professional sportsmen, Tiger Woods has discovered that it is often the knees that are the first to suffer from the relentless pressures exerted on them by their commitment to professional sport.
Tiger Woods' knee surgery became the talking point of the recent US Open which he won after a nineteen hole play-off, beating Rocco Mediate.
Woods has had two previous operations on his left knee and underwent his third knee operation in April this year. Having won the US Open on one leg, he subsequently revealed that he has been playing for ten months with a damaged anterior cruciate ligament and has also suffered a double stress fracture in his left leg.
“Now, it is clear that the right thing to do is to listen to my doctors, follow through with this surgery and focus my attention on rehabilitating my knee", Woods said on the Tiger Woods Web site.
This article is written by Keith Pollard, Managing Editor of Private Healthcare UK, a keen golfer who has recently undergone a knee replacement, and subsequently returned to the golf course.
He’s not the only professional golfer to suffer from knee problems. Ernie Els missed part of the 2005 season due to knee problems. Brad Faxon underwent surgery to repair a torn ACL in his left knee on in 2005 and missed part of the 2005 PGA Tour season. Peter Jacobsen has had surgery at the Steadman Hawkins Clinic in the USA to cut out some of the cartilage from the lateral and interior of his knee. Mark James also suffered setbacks in his golf career through knee problems.
The golf swing exerts forces on the body, particularly the knees and the back, in a repetitive fashion that gives rise to these problems. The most common problems for golfers are:
- Torn meniscus (torn cartilage)
- Osteoarthritis of the knee, which in some will result in the need for a knee replacement later in life.
- Inflamed tendons around the knee
- Chondral defects where damage to the joint surface occurs.
Woods originally ruptured his Anterior Cruciate Ligament (ACL) running at home after the Open Championship. The ACL is one of the four ligaments around the knee that join the thigh bone and the shin bone. It's function is to keep the knee stable and to prevent hyper-extension of the knee.
The aim of the operation is to reconstruct the torn ligament with one or more tendons taken from your knee. There is a choice as to which tendons can be used to reconstruct the ligament. These are a graft of patellar tendon with bone at either end, or one or two of the hamstring tendons. Both work well, but they do have their own problems.
Tiger underwent anterior cruciate ligament (ACL) reconstruction on June 25th 2008 at the Healthsouth Surgery Center in Park City. The surgery was carried out by Dr Thomas Rosenberg, Orthopedic Surgeon. It is the fourth time that Dr Rosenberg has operated on Tiger's troublesome knee.
"We were confident going into this surgery, and I am pleased with the results," Dr Rosenberg said in a statement released by IMG, Woods' management company. We look forward to Tiger's return to the golf course.
If you’re a keen golfer, hampered by knee problems, then there are plenty of options available for private knee surgery in the UK.