An ACL injury is one of the biggest injuries a professional athlete can suffer.
The road to recovery is long and tough. Many players never return the same. The current procedure is effective with rehab, but it carries a high risk of arthritis.
Harvard is working on a new study that would change the landscape of the effects of this injury. The new procedure, which would bridge the torn ends of the ACL and regenerate it within the body, would theoretically reduce that risk.
"Growing ACLs out of nothing is awesome, and you're going to be able to see guys come back from ACL injuries at a much more significant quality because they won't be having another tendon from somewhere else put in its place. It'll be a full ACL," said New York Giants linebacker Mark Herzlich, who as an NFLPA executive board member is also on the executive board of the Harvard study.
"There have been successful ACL repairs on humans in this study. I don't think they're at a point now where it's going to be common practice in hospitals, but we're on the road to that."
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