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BEAR Implant for ACL Reconstruction

Dr. Cassandra A. Lee, a board-certified orthopedic surgeon and sports medicine specialist, offers a new and innovative option for ACL reconstruction: the Bridge-Enhanced ACL Repair (BEAR) Implant. The BEAR Implant is a bioengineered scaffold that stimulates your body's natural healing process and allows your torn ACL to heal itself. Unlike traditional ACL reconstruction, the BEAR Implant does not require a graft and preserves more of your native tissue.

BEAR Implant Overview


The BEAR Implant Procedure

The BEAR Implant procedure is performed arthroscopically through small incisions in your knee. Dr. Lee will insert the implant between the torn ends of your ACL and inject your own blood into the scaffold. The blood will clot and form a bridge that connects the ligament ends and provides a scaffold for new tissue to grow. Over time, the implant will be absorbed by your body and replaced by your own ligament tissue.

Benifits of The BEAR Implant

The benefits of the BEAR Implant include:

  • Helps your own ACL heal.
  • No need for grafts, so no second wound site that needs to heal and no worries about donor graft quality or risk of disease.
  • Restores torn ACL quality and size similar to your non-injured ACL.
  • Faster recovery and return to activity
  • Simple outpatient procedure
  • Higher patient satisfaction with being ready to return to sports

How does the BEAR implant work?

The BEAR implant is a decellularized, bovine-derived, type I collagen implant that resorbs within 8 weeks of implantation. It is inserted between the torn ends of the ACL and combined with the patient's own blood to form a clot that bridges the gap and protects the clot from the synovial fluid. The BEAR implant facilitates the body's own healing response by supporting cell migration and proliferation. Within eight weeks, the BEAR implant is resorbed and replaced with native cells, collagen and blood vessels. The new tissue continues to remodel and strengthen over time.

Can anyone get the BEAR implant?

No, not everyone is eligible for the BEAR implant. The BEAR implant is indicated for patients who are at least 14 years old and skeletally mature, have a complete rupture of their ACL confirmed by MRI, and can undergo surgery within 50 days of tearing their ACL.

How is the BEAR implant different from ACL reconstruction?

The BEAR implant is different from ACL reconstruction because it does not replace the ACL with a graft from another part of the body or a deceased donor. Instead, it restores the native ACL by bridging the gap between the torn ends and allowing them to heal together. The BEAR implant preserves the remaining ACL tissue and its orientation, eliminates donor site morbidity or risk of disease transmission, and potentially provides more normal joint mechanics.

What is the recovery time for BEAR implant?

The recovery time for BEAR implant varies depending on individual factors such as age, activity level, and adherence to physical therapy. However, some general guidelines are: partial weight bearing for 2 weeks after surgery, full weight bearing after 2 weeks with crutches or brace as needed, range of motion exercises starting at 2 weeks after surgery, strengthening exercises starting at 6 weeks after surgery, return to low-impact activities at 3 months after surgery, return to high-impact activities at 6 months after surgery with clearance from surgeon and physical therapist.

Are you a candidate for the BEAR Implant ?

You may be a candidate for this procedure if:

  • You are over 14 years of age
  • You have a complete ACL rupture confirmed by an MRI scan

If you are interested in learning more about the BEAR Implant or finding out if you are a candidate for this procedure, please contact Dr. Lee's office today to schedule a consultation. She will evaluate your condition, discuss your treatment options, and answer any questions you may have.

Don't let an ACL injury keep you from enjoying an active and healthy lifestyle. With the BEAR Implant, you can restore your knee function and get back to doing what you love.

For all appointments and inquiries, please call to schedule an appointment or click to request an appointment online.

For more information, please visit

  • American Academy of Orthopaedic Surgeons Logo
  • American Orthopaedic Society for Sports Medicine Logo
  • Arthroscopy Association of North America Logo
  • International Cartilage Regeneration & Joint Preservation Society Logo