Incidence of anterior cruciate ligament injury patterns in Japanese judo players

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Sasaki E, Kamitani T, Kinouchi S, Kamiya N, Ikumi A, Tateishi T, Miyazaki S, Ishibashi Y, Nagahiro S. Incidence of anterior cruciate ligament injury patterns in Japanese judo players from a nationwide insurance database. Asia Pac J Sports Med Arthrosc Rehabil Technol. 2023 Aug 22;33:6-12. doi: 10.1016/j.asmart.2023.08.011. PMID: 37663061; PMCID: PMC10470359.


This study aimed to characterize the age- and sex-specific Anterior cruciate ligament (ACL) injury rates and related injury patterns in judo players in Japan using the nationwide insurance database.

This was a descriptive epidemiological study. We examined a total of 2142 adolescents with anterior cruciate ligament injuries registered in the insurance system of the Japan Sports Council between January 2009 and December 2018. The age- and sex-specific incidences were estimated for the levels of 7th, 8th, and 9th grades of junior high school and 10th, 11th, and 12th grades of high school. The anterior cruciate ligament injury circumstances were classified into three patterns based on the impact to the involved knee: high-impact valgus force, low-impact trunk displacement, or no-impact knee twisting.

The incidence of anterior cruciate ligament injury from the 7th to 12th grades were 0.5, 0.9, 0.9, 6.9, 8.6, and 6.1 per 1000 athlete-years in male players and 1.3, 3.8, 3.4, 16.8, 19.5, and 13.6 per 1000 athlete-years in female players. The most prevalent injury pattern was a low-impact contact injury (42.6%) with Osoto-gari, followed by a high-impact contact injury (29.8%). The concomitant medial collateral ligament (MCL) injury rate was 18.1%, which was correlated with a high-impact contact injury (p = 0.005) by multiple regression analysis.

The highest incidence of age- and sex-specific anterior cruciate ligament injury was 19.5 per 1000 athlete-years in female high school students in the 11th grade. The most frequent injury pattern was low-impact contact injury with trunk displacement, indicating that trunk stabilization training could help prevent anterior cruciate ligament injury in judo.

Keywords: Anterior cruciate ligamentContact injuryIncidenceJudoNationwide database

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