Current measures of knee joint laxity, such as those found clinically using the KT-2000 arthrometer, are not highly repeatable or reliable by Huber et al. (1997, “Intratester and Intertester Reliability of the KT-1000 Arthrometer in the Assessment of Posterior Laxity of the Knee,” Am. J. Sports Med., 25(4), pp. 479–485). In this study, a noninvasive in vivo magnetic resonance (MR) imaging-based measure of laxity, the knee loading apparatus (KLA) with anterior positioning frame, was evaluated with five normal subjects (repeatability study, n = 3). Effects of hormones and muscle guarding were considered. When compared to the KT-2000, the KLA was found to be more precise (±0.33 mm versus ±1.17 mm) but less reliable (Cronbach's alpha > 0.70 in 0/8 versus 5/8 load levels). Improved control of the initial subject position is recommended for future design iterations. The KLA shows promise as an accurate and reliable tool for measuring in vivo joint and ligament laxity.

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