A Ligament of Their Imagination? Belgian Surgeons Discover New Body Part

By @SlGRlD on

Two surgeons working at University Hospitals Leuven in Belgium recently discovered a new body part. Their discovery is a ligament located in the knee and it reportedly plays an important role in knee injuries.

The ligament, named by the surgeons as the anterolateral ligament, was seen during a series of macroscopic dissections done at the hospital, sources say. Before the procedure, the surgeons started researching on possible causes of knee injury complications after rehabilitation. The doctors were reportedly treating anterior cruciate ligament (ACL) during their research and subsequent discoverd the new body part.

Dr Steven Claes and his team saw an 1879 paper authored by Paul Segond, a knee expert of the era and tried to see if Segond was right. Segond hypothesised the existence of the ananterolateral ligament which he described as a "pearly, resistant, fibrous band" when seen in knee fractures. According to IFLScience.com, the hypothesis turned out to be right.

Medical Daily reveals that surgeons have always been confused by this fibrous part of the body because of a lack of a uniform definition or description of how it looks like.

Dr Bellemans, another member of the team, and Dr Steven Claes were able to locate the said ligament described by Segond. According to Medical Daily, the team dissected 41 cadaveric knees and found that 97 per cent of the individuals had the "pearly band."

Researchers say that the existence of the ligament aids in explaining why some patients suffering from ACL-related injuries keep experiencing pain and other complications after a surgical procedure.

Researchers add that many ACL patients complained that there were "pivot shifts" on their knees. The discovery, according to experts, will help doctors get rid of the complications because they can now understand that region of the body better.

Another new human body part was also discovered in July of 2013 -a microscopic layer of the cornea called "Dua's Layer". While the discovery is microscopic, it will reportedly make it easier for surgeons to perform eye surgery.

Experts believe that these discoveries teach the science community that there are still a lot of things to learn about human anatomy. Researchers also say that there are still a lot of things that medical practitioners and scientists do not know about the human body.

Join the Discussion