Novel Arthrometer for Quantifying In Vivo Knee Laxity in Three Planes Following Total Knee Arthroplasty

David Z. Shamritsky, Erin E. Berube, Nicolas Sapountzis, Allison Diaz, Ethan C. Krell, Timothy M. Wright, Michael Parides, Geoffrey H. Westrich, David J. Mayman, Peter K. Sculco, Brian P. Chalmers, Carl W. Imhauser

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Background: Knee instability is a leading cause of dissatisfaction following total knee arthroplasty (TKA). Instability can involve abnormal laxity in multiple directions including varus-valgus (VV) angulation, anterior-posterior (AP) translation, and internal-external rotation (IER). No existing arthrometer objectively quantifies knee laxity in all three of these directions. The study objectives were to verify the safety and assess reliability of a novel multiplanar arthrometer. Methods: The arthrometer utilized a five degree-of-freedom instrumented linkage. Two examiners each conducted two tests on the leg that had received a TKA of 20 patients (mean age 65 years (range, 53-75); 9 men, 11 women), with nine and eleven distinct patients tested at 3-month and 1-year postoperative time points, respectively. AP forces from −10 to 30 Newtons, VV moments of ±3 Newton-meters, and IER moments of ±2.5 Newton-meters were applied to each subject's replaced knee. Severity and location of knee pain during testing were assessed using a visual analog scale. Intraexaminer and interexaminer reliabilities were characterized using intraclass correlation coefficients. Results: All subjects successfully completed testing. Pain during testing averaged 0.7 (out of possible 10; range, 0-2.5). Intraexaminer reliability was >0.77 for all loading directions and examiners. Interexaminer reliability and 95% confidence intervals were 0.85 (0.66-0.94), 0.67 (0.35-0.85), and 0.54 (0.16-0.79) in the VV, IER, and AP directions, respectively. Conclusion: The novel arthrometer was safe for evaluating AP, VV, and IER laxities in subjects who had received TKA. This device could be used to examine relationships between laxity and patient perceptions of knee instability.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)S190-S195
JournalJournal of Arthroplasty
Issue number6
StatePublished - Jun 2023
Externally publishedYes


  • arthrometer
  • instability
  • knee
  • laxity
  • midflexion
  • total knee arthroplasty


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