Tibial Tubercle Transfer (TTT)

Knee surgery for kneecap dislocation and pain

Perth knee surgeon | Orthopaedic surgeon Dr David Colvin - shoulder and knee surgery

Tibial Tubercle Transfer (TTT)

Knee surgeon Perth

What is Tibial Tubercle Transfer (TTT)?

Tibial Tubercle Transfer (TTT) is what orthopaedic surgeons call a realignment procedure. Think about how we straighten the knee. The quadriceps muscles on the front of the thigh contract. They pull on the patella, which is connected to the tibia (shin bone) by the patellar tendon, and the knee straightens.

This works well when everything is nicely centred at the front of the knee. Unfortunately, things do not always line up, and when they don't the knee cap tilts to the outside of its groove. This is called a maltracking patella.

Dr. David Colvin, trained in orthopaedic surgery in Perth. David's specialty is knee and shoulder surgery and sports injuries.

About Dr Colvin

Is Tibial Tubercle Transfer the surgery you need?

If the knee cap isn't running smoothly in the centre of the knee, it can be realigned by tibial tubercle transfer. This surgery for knee cap maltracking is also called patellofemoral realignment. You might benefit from TTT if you have:

What is involved in a Tibial Tubercle Transfer procedure?

Firstly, Dr Colvin will do a Knee Arthroscopy to smooth damage to the articular cartilage to perform a lateral release to free up the knee cap.Then the knee cap is centralised by cutting the tibia bone (osteotomy) where the patellar tendon attaches.

This bump of bone just below the patellar is called the tibial tuberosity. It is shifted inwards about one centimetre and repositioned with metal screws. At this time, everything should line up nicely.



Tibial Tubercle Transfer | Perth WA Knee Surgeon

In the field of shoulder and knee reconstruction, successful outcomes from an operation are 50% surgery and 50% rehabilitation. You could say the surgery is the easy bit, the rehabilitation is all hard slog. Dr Colvin’s CO.RE exercise programs are just that, a core plan for your successful recovery.

Choose your program

What to expect after Tibial Tubercle Transfer?

You will need crutches for four weeks but we start knee bending and taking some weight immediately. Dr Colvin does not use a brace for this procedure, to reduce muscle wasting and knee stiffness. The cut bone takes three months to heal. Full strength can take six to twelve months to be restored.

Need more information about this procedure?

If you think you may benefit from a Tibial Tubercle Transfer, or suffer from a sore knee cap, dislocation, or osteoarthritis of the patella make an appointment to visit orthopaedic surgeon Dr David Colvin in Perth, and discuss your treatment options.

Video: Tibial Tubercle Transfer explained by Dr David Colvin, Orthopaedic Surgeon in Perth

Kneecap Pain

A sore knee cap is a very common complaint in all age groups. One in three people experience knee cap pain at some stage. Typically this pain is experienced at the front of the knee. The knee cap, also known as the patella, with doctors referring to the type of pain as “patellofemoral pain”.
sore knee cap pain

Kneecap Dislocation

Knee cap dislocation occurs when the knee cap is completely displaced out of its normal position. The knee cap runs in a groove on the front of the femur, called the trochlea. When the knee cap is knocked out of this groove, a dislocated patella always goes to the outer side of the knee. As a result, the muscles on the inner side of the knee are damaged and the ligaments can be torn or stretched.
patellar dislocation

Treatment of Patellofemoral Pain

The patellofemoral joint refers to the kneecap (patella) and the groove it runs in at the front of the knee (trochlea).The quadriceps muscles on the front of the thigh connect to the top of the patella. It is then connected to the tibia (shin bone) by the patellar tendon. The point of attachment is a bone prominence called the tibial tuberosity.
treatment of patellofemeral pain

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Suite 213/25 McCourt St,
Subiaco WA 6008


Monday to Friday 8:30am to 5.00pm AWST

Consulting Rooms

Dr David Colvin consults at:
Western Orthopaedic Clinic

  • These rooms are part of St John of God Subiaco Hospital.
  • Parking is available on site.


Dr David Colvin operates at:
St John of God Subiaco Hospital
12 Salvado Rd,
Subiaco WA 6008