Introduction and objective:
Patella dislocation represents 3.3% of all knee injuries often leading to persistent instability. Medial patello-femoral ligament(MPFL) reconstruction is the standard method of treatment in the patellar instability. Rehabilitation after MPFL-R is a long and demanding procedure. The hypothesis presented reflects the idea that despite relatively good access to hospital care and surgical options, the post-operative rehabilitation care system is still inferior in rural areas versus the one offered in major cities and towns.

Material and methods:
Between January 2015 – January 2018, 47 patients met the study inclusion criteria, diagnosed and operated on due to patellar instability. 8 patients were lost for full follow-up. Finally, 39 patients were included, divided into two groups – group A (19 from cities), group B (20 from rural area). Prospective KOOS and Kujala scales assessments were conducted: preoperative, 6 and 12 months after surgery. Knee isokinetic muscle strength was measured at 3 stages; prior to surgery, 6 and 12 months after reconstruction.

All patients showed significant improvement measured in the KOOS and Kujala scales after the procedure, compared to the pre-operational results. Despite equal clinical improvement, patients from Group A(city) achieved better functional outcomes as presented in the results of knee extensor functional tests using a Biodex dynamometer.

Rehabilitation after MPFL reconstruction improves muscle strength and clinical outcome. Patients from rural areas had inferior functional results in comparison to the patients from major cities, even 12 months after surgical patella stabilization. Despite the development of roads and transport according to the EU cohesion policy, there are still differences in rehabilitation results between rural and city areas.

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