BEAR Implant

Also known as: Bridge enhanced ACL restoration.

What is a BEAR implant?

A bridge enhanced ACL restoration, or BEAR implant, for short, is a relatively new way to heal a torn anterior cruciate ligament (ACL) in the knee. It differs from a typical ACL reconstruction surgery, which involves replacing the ACL with another tendon from elsewhere in the body or a donor. Instead, the BEAR implant enables the ACL to heal itself over time.

What happens during the procedure?

First, a small incision is made in the patient’s leg, and then arthroscopic instruments are used to position the BEAR implant in the space between the two torn ends of the ACL.

The patient’s blood is then added to the BEAR implant to activate clot formation. This begins the healing process of the ACL. The two ends of the ACL are stitched to the BEAR implant, and then the incision is also closed. Within eight weeks of the procedure, the BEAR implant will be absorbed by the body, and the healing process of the ACL will have begun

Is any special preparation needed?

Preparations for a BEAR implant are similar to those of other minimally invasive surgical procedures. In order to be a potential candidate for a BEAR implant, the patient must be at least 14 years old, have completely ruptured their ACL and be able to undergo surgery within 50 days of the rupture. An ACL stump of at least one centimeter will need to be attached to the tibia to construct the repair for the BEAR implant.

Ask your health care provider if any other preparations are necessary. 

What are the risk factors?

A risk of re-tear, infection, meniscus injury, knee pain or limited range of motion are all potential risk factors of the BEAR implant procedure.

Reviewed by: Craig Spurdle, MD

This page was last updated on: January 12, 2023 10:10 AM

Pediatric Orthopedics, Sports Medicine & Spinal Surgery

Children's orthopedic care needs are different from those of adults. Read more here to learn how our services are tailored to address the unique needs of children and teens.

Learn More

ACL Injury Prevention Program

A training program designed to correct biomechanical risk factors of an ACL injury and improve strength, power, and agility in young athletes.

Learn More