BATON ROUGE, La. (BRPROUD) — Ochsner is the first to perform a procedure using a new method for repairing ACL injuries.

Dr. Jeremy Burnham, Ochsner Baton Rouge Medical Director of Sports Medicine, is the first in the region to use advanced technology to repair a torn anterior cruciate ligament (ACL). Dr. Deryk Jones, Ochsner Sports Medicine Institute Section Head New Orleans, was the first surgeon in Louisiana to perform the BEAR ACL implant and is assisting in clinical trials.

A torn ACL is an impairing knee injury that cannot heal without treatment.

The new procedure is still is in trial and uses the Bridge-Enhanced ACL Repair Implant, BEAR, a bioengineered material that allows the torn ligament ends to reattach themselves. The procedure is minimally invasive.

The BEAR implant was pioneered by Dr. Martha Murray from Boston Children’s Hospital. The first human study in 2016 showed further success and was later approved by the FDA in late 2020.

“The goal of ACL surgery is to restore the native knee anatomy and stability. Traditionally, this has been done by reconstructing the ACL. However the BEAR ACL repair procedure provides an alternative option by restoring the patient’s own ligament,” Dr. Burnham says.

Since a torn ACL rarely heals without treatment, ACL surgery is one of the most common procedures. In ACL reconstruction, the surgeon removes the entire torn ligament and rebuilds it with a tendon removed from the patient’s leg.

In the new procedure, the BEAR device is filled with minimal amounts of the patient’s blood, and place it in between the torn ligament. This will allow clotting and serve as a bridge for the ends to grow on their own.

To find out more about the BEAR ACL implant or if a patient qualifies, call (225) 761-5895.

Video demonstrations and FAQ are available here.