A tibial spine avulsion is a variation of an ACL injury that usually occurs in young athletes who have not finished growing. Instead of the ACL tearing, the ligament pulls off the tibia and pulls off its attachment, the tibial spine, in the process.

A tibial spine avulsion or tibial spine fracture is not a common injury, but it can afflict a young athlete. He could suffer a noncontact injury, such as landing awkwardly from a jump or turning to changing directions. He could get hit by another player and suffer the injury too.

A young soccer player suffers a tibial spine avulsion

The treatment of a tibial spine avulsion depends on the nature of the injury. If the bony fragment is nondisplaced, meaning that it sits exactly where it is supposed to be, a young athlete might avoid surgery. Treatment might involve rest from sports and wearing a brace. If the bony fragment is displaced, surgery to reattach it is often necessary.

In this video, I discuss the injury, treatment, surgery and recovery of a tibial spine avulsion or tibial spine fracture.

Also read:
Common knee injuries in young athletes
Questions parents often have when their child suffers a torn ACL

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