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Title: Reliability of wearable sensors-based parameters for the assessment of knee stability
Authors: Baldazzi, Andrea
Molinaro, Luca
Taborri, Juri 
Margheritini, Fabrizio
Rossi, Stefano 
Bergamini, Elena
Journal: PLOS ONE 
Issue Date: 2022
Anterior cruciate ligament (ACL) rupture represents one of the most recurrent knee injuries in soccer players. To allow a safe return to sport after ACL reconstruction, standardised and reliable procedures/criteria are needed. In this context, wearable sensors are gaining momentum as they allow obtaining objective information during sport-specific and in-the-field tasks. This paper aims at proposing a sensor-based protocol for the assessment of knee stability and at quantifying its reliability. Seventeen soccer players performed a single leg squat and a cross over hop test. Each participant was equipped with two magnetic-inertial measurement units located on the tibia and foot. Parameters related to the knee stability were obtained from linear acceleration and angular velocity signals. The intraclass correlation coefficient (ICC) and minimum detectable change (MDC) were calculated to evaluate each parameter reliability. The ICC ranged from 0.29 to 0.84 according to the considered parameter. Specifically, angular velocity-based parameters proved to be more reliable than acceleration-based counterparts, particularly in the cross over hop test (average ICC values of 0.46 and 0.63 for acceleration- and angular velocity-based parameters, respectively). An exception was represented, in the single leg squat, by parameters extracted from the acceleration trajectory on the tibial transverse plane (0.60≤ICC≤0.76), which can be considered as promising candidates for ACL injury risk assessment. Overall, greater ICC values were found for the dominant limb, with respect to the non-dominant one (average ICC: 0.64 and 0.53, respectively). Interestingly, this between-limb difference in variability was not always mirrored by LSI results. MDC values provide useful information in the perspective of applying the proposed protocol on athletes with ACL reconstruction. Thus, The outcome of this study sets the basis for the definition of reliable and objective criteria for return to sport clearance after ACL injury.
ISSN: 1932-6203
Appears in Collections:A1. Articolo in rivista

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