16-year-old elite motocross biker, Sebastian
Consultant: Prof Adrian Wilson
16 year old elite motocross biker is back in the saddle following a repair to both his ACL and medial meniscus with Prof Adrian Wilson
Sebastian is an elite young motorcross biker, who competes at a national level in the sport. In July 2017, he came off his bike, twisting his knee badly. His parents came across Professor Wilson and Sebastian was referred in the Autumn.
An MRI quickly confirmed that Sebastian had ruptured his the anterior cruciate ligament (ACL) and had also torn his medial meniscus, which had sustained a ‘ramp lesion’, which is a newly recognised condition. The medial meniscus is a band of thick, rubbery cartilage on the inner side of the knee joint and attached to the shinbone (tibia), which acts as shock absorbers to stabilise the knee.
Having diagnosed this ramp lesion, Adrian hoped that he would be able to repair this at the same time as the ACL, without which the ACL surgery may have been unsuccessful. This would require using pioneering surgical techniques, including using a telescope to look at the back of Sebastian’s knee.
Adrian explained to Sebastian the benefits of a repair rather than a reconstruction to his ACL, which would allow him to make a faster recovery. This was an easy choice for Sebastian:
“I was given two choices: a standard operation which uses part of the hamstring to re-construct the ACL, rehab 9-12 months or try a relatively new procedure – ‘autograft anterior cruciate ligament reconstruction’ using a nylon cord, rehab 4 months. We went for the latter as I needed to be back to full recovery by the start of the season in March 2018.”
The operation went ahead, with Adrian again using a telescope to repair the ramp lesion, a technique Adrian has learned from working first hand with two pioneering French surgeons in this field, Romain Seil and Bertrand Sonnery-Cottet. It is thought that Sebastian is the youngest person to have had this combined operation.
Sebastian’s recovery went smoothly, with him experiencing minimal pain after the operation, and regaining a full range of movement within a matter of weeks. Whilst he was keen to get back on his motocross bike more quickly, Adrian recommended he wait until the start of the new season in early 2018 to ensure the knee is fully healed.
Sebastian said: “I am now back to full function, skipping, running, downhill mountain biking etc no problems at all. I will be back competing for the beginning of the season in March as promised. Thanks to Professor Wilson for his advice and expertise, without him I would not be doing what I love to do, can’t recommend him and his team enough!”
In April 2018, Sebastian gave this update: “I have been training hard to get back to where I was before the injury and I am now fitter, stronger and faster than I was before the injury. I competed in the first British championship of the season and got 7th place overall with lap times the same as 3rd and 4th place. I cannot thank Professor Wilson enough for getting me back up to speed when I was at my lowest. It has been a long road to recovery but considering that if I had had a different type of surgery, I still wouldn’t be on the bike yet, it could have been a lot longer. I would highly recommend this procedure to anyone.”
Adrian said: “I am delighted with how well his ACL and ramp lesion has proceeded up to now and I look forward to hearing how his 2018 motocross season goes!”