The Open Orthopaedics Journal

ISSN: ― Volume ,

Quadriceps Tendon Rupture Following Total Knee Arthroplasty

Steven T. Heer1, James O'Dowd2, Rebecca R. Butler3, David O. Dewitt4, Gaurav Khanna4, Raffy Mirzayan4, *
1 Tulane School of Medicine, New Orleans, LA, USA
2 Department of Orthopaedic Surgery, USC Keck School of Medicine, Los Angeles, CA, USA
3 Department of Research and Evaluation, Kaiser Permanente, Pasadena, CA, USA
4 Department of Orthopaedic Surgery, Kaiser Permanente Southern California, Baldwin Park, CA, USA



Rupture of a Quadriceps Tendon (QT) following a Total Knee Arthroplasty (TKA) is a rare complication. The purpose of this study was to report outcomes and complications of QT repair following TKA.


From a cohort of 437 QT repairs, 19 individuals were identified who had previously undergone a TKA on the ipsilateral leg. Data was collected on individuals with a minimum follow up of 3 months post QT repair (n=16), including Knee Society Scores, pre and post-operative lag, and pre and post-operative range of motion.


13 patients were treated with End-to-End (EE) repairs and 6 were treated with transosseous or suture anchor repair (ATO). In the ATO group, there was no difference in pre (68.0 ± 22.5) and post KSS (82 ± 9.16) (p=0.231), but in the EE group, there was a significant improvement in KSS (pre=67.8 ± 13.1, post=86 ± 16.75, p=0.0027). There was significant difference in post-operative extension lag between ATO (26.0 ± 12.6) vs. EE (4.0 ± 2.74) (p=0.0083). Four out of six ATO patients had extension lag ≥10 degree extensor lag (66.7%) compared to 2 out of 13 (15.4%) patients in the EE group. Compared to EE, ATO repair had an 8.00 times odds of re-tear (95% CI: 0.53,120.6; p=0.133) and 2.75 times greater risk of infection (95% CI: 0.284, 26.61; p=0.382).


Patients who underwent EE repair had better functional improvements compared to the ATO group and smaller extension lag.

Keywords: Total knee arthroplasty, Quadriceps tear, Total, Knee, Quadriceps, Tendon, Rupture.

Article Information

Identifiers and Pagination:

Year: 2019
Volume: 13
First Page: 250
Last Page: 254
Publisher Id: TOORTHJ-13-250
DOI: 10.2174/1874325001913010250

Article History:

Received Date: 09/08/2019
Revision Received Date: 21/11/2019
Acceptance Date: 17/12/2019
Electronic publication date: 31/12/2019
Collection year: 2019

© 2019 Heer et al.

open-access license: This is an open access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International Public License (CC-BY 4.0), a copy of which is available at: This license permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original author and source are credited.

* Address correspondence to this author at the Department of Orthopaedic Surgery, Kaiser Permanente Southern California, Baldwin Park, CA, USA; E-mail:

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