Lateral release

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Lateral release

A lateral release is a surgical procedure to release tight capsular structures (lateral retinaculum) on the outer aspect (lateral aspect) of the kneecap (patella). This is usually performed because of knee pain related to the kneecap being pulled over to the outer (lateral) side and not being able to run properly in the centre of the groove of the femur bone as the knee bends and straightens. The procedure is also known as a 'lateral retinacular release'.

Amongst experienced knee surgeons with a special interest in diseases of the patellofemoral articulation, isolated lateral release is rarely performed. Strong consensus was found that isolated lateral release should not be undertaken without prior planning in the form of objective clinical indications and preoperative informed consent.[1]


  1. ^ Fithian, D. C.; Paxton, E. W.; Post, W. R.; Panni, A. S.; International Patellofemoral Study Group (2004). "Lateral retinacular release: A survey of the international patellofemoral study group". Arthroscopy. 20 (5): 463–468. doi:10.1016/j.arthro.2004.03.002. PMID 15122135.
  1. Panni AS, Tartarone M, Patricola A, Paxton EW, Fithian DC (May 2005). "Long-term results of lateral retinacular release". Arthroscopy. 21 (5): 526–31. doi:10.1016/j.arthro.2005.01.007. PMID 15891716.
  2. Ricchetti ET, Mehta S, Sennett BJ, Huffman GR (May 2007). "Comparison of lateral release versus lateral release with medial soft-tissue realignment for the treatment of recurrent patellar instability: a systematic review". Arthroscopy. 23 (5): 463–8. doi:10.1016/j.arthro.2007.01.007. PMID 17478275.
  3. Lattermann C, Toth J, Bach BR (Jun 2007). "The role of lateral retinacular release in the treatment of patellar instability". Sports Med Arthrosc. 15 (2): 57–60. doi:10.1097/JSA.0b013e318042af30. PMID 17505318.
  4. Gerbino PG, Zurakowski D, Soto R, Griffin E, Reig TS, Micheli LJ (Jan–Feb 2008). "Long-term functional outcome after lateral patellar retinacular release in adolescents: an observational cohort study with minimum 5-year follow-up". J Pediatr Orthop. 28 (1): 118–23. doi:10.1097/bpo.0b013e31815b4dcf. PMID 18157056.
  5. Fithian DC, Paxton EW, Post WR, Panni AS; International Patellofemoral Study Group (May 2004). "Lateral retinacular release: a survey of the International Patellofemoral Study Group". Arthroscopy. 20 (5): 463–8. doi:10.1016/j.arthro.2004.03.002. PMID 15122135.CS1 maint: multiple names: authors list (link)