Overview

Knee ligament injury is a widely spoken term in and around the globe. Knee ligaments are a flexible collection of soft tissues connecting the thigh bone to the lower leg bone. Ligament injury in the knee causes severe trauma and pain to the affected. Ligament torn in knee can occur in a car accident, over weight lifting, knee injury fall, wrong gymnastic move, heavy exercise, sports events like football, hockey, and old age.

Knee ligament injury can be known through various symptoms. Ligament injury of knee like knee ACL torn induces various symptoms like pop-up sounds, severe pain, and instability in the knee ligament area. Ligament injuries in knee might be diagnosed with MRI, CT-scan, and arthroscopy for knee injury treatment. 

The treatment can include home remedies, joint exercises, and medical treatment for a complete cure. The recovery for the ligament knee injury could be according to the nature of the injury caused to the connective band of tissue and the age factor of the injured person. The prime aspect is to be noted that if any accident causing ligament injury in the knee is claimable with a lawsuit filed by the help of a personal injury attorney.

Knee ligament: a short note

The medical definition implies that knee ligaments are robust and elastic bands of soft tissues connecting the femur (thigh bone) to the tibia (shin bone). The knee ligament serves the knee structure to hold them together as a unit. It provides stability to the knee bones. It prevents the collapse of thigh bone from sliding down to shin bone or vice versa.

  • What are the knee ligaments?

There are two types of knee ligaments. They are collateral knee ligaments and cruciate knee ligaments. Collateral knee ligaments comprise medial collateral ligaments (MCL) and lateral collateral ligaments (LCL). MCL connects the femur (thigh bone) to the tibia (shin bone). It is on the internal side of the knee. It gives stability to the inner knee. While LCL is on the external side of the knee, giving external stability to the knee. LCL joints thigh bone to the calf bone called the fibula. 

Cruciate ligaments are inside the knee-joint connecting femur to the tibia. The anterior cruciate ligament (ACL) is in front of the knee, controlling rotation and forward movement of the tibia, while, posterior cruciate ligament (PCL) is just behind the ACL controlling the backward movement of the tibia. The illustration can best explain the cruciate knee ligaments and collateral knee ligaments.

Illustration-on-knee-ligament-injury

  • How are knee ligaments made?

The knee ligament is made up of various elements known as protein tissues, flexible fibers, and collagen. All these components give stability, flexibility, and protection to the knees. The ligament is a soft tissue protecting the knee structure.

  • Knee ligaments process

Cleveland clinic analyses that the knee ligaments protect the knee movement. Knee ligaments impede the knee from any awkward movements. It strengthens the knee joint. It absorbs shocks as the foot stamps the surface. It ever works as a connecter between the femur and tibia. It gives flexibility to the knee—a small soft tissue does miraculous work to support the mortar organs from any friction.

What is a knee ligament injury?

The ligament damage in the knee is commonly called knee ligament injury. This is a damage caused by the external force may be a fall or an accident. Knee ACL torn limits the movement of the knee. Serious ligament injury in the knee evokes instability and unbearable pain in the knee structure. In gist, any injury suffered in the cruciate ligaments or collateral ligaments creates tension to the knee structure, which is called knee ligament injury. It matters not whether the impact is minor or major. 

Causes of knee ligament injury

Ligament injury of knee can occur in motor vehicle accidents or sports events. The US survey reveals that approximately 175000 to 250000 people get affected by knee ligament injury every year. There are 55% of people fall prey to knee ligaments injury due to auto accidents, and 40% of the people get affected due to various sports.

There are also other reasons people get affected. They are as follows.

  • Giving a sudden pose to the leg while running
  • Immediate direction change
  • Incorrect landing while jumping high while playing basketball or volleyball
  • Knee injury fall in a hard surface with force
  • A strong collision during the ball grab
  • Strong hit at the knee with a boot

ACL knee torn is bound to happen for the athletes. Once the movement goes awkward, the knee ACL torn takes place. Since it is before the front part of the knee, the ACL torn gets affected very fast. It causes trouble to the knee’s movement. Finally, knee ligament injury causes unstable movement and stiffness to the knee.

Symptoms of knee ligament injury

Knee ligament injury produces a lot of symptoms asking the injured persons to pay attention to it. As the injury takes place, the signal is passed on to the brain. The brain senses the damage in the knee clearly. If the damage in the knee ligaments is too severe, the person can collapse. Some vital symptoms for ligament injury of knee include-

  • Knee joint pain while walking
  • Knee swelling around the injured part
  • Knee locks giving a flip sound
  • Lose balance in your knee
  • Stiffness and weakness in the knees
  • Rugged clasps and popping sounds while the knee ligament injury occurs
  • Non-normal knee motion.

The complicated knee ligament injury needs to meet the doctor for a further course of action for a better cure. 

Knee ligament injury diagnosis

Knee ligament injury diagnosis starts from meeting the medical service provider. The doctor will have a genuine feel of the injured location with a soft touch. Ligament injury of knee cannot be verified through the empirical eyes unless, the knee ligament injury is severe. There is no hard and fast rule to identify exact injury in the knee ligament structure by a soft touch, even if, the dubiousness of the ligament injuries in the knee have to be verified through MRI or CT-scan for a better clarity.

Though X-rays give some good results, doctors do not prescribe it for ligament injuries in the knee because the results may be blurry and may not give clear-cut data on the soft tissue injuries. Some minor ligament knee injuries are known through the symptoms of swellings for the doctors to make it clear. The ACL knee torn and sprain can be diagnosed through MRI, CT-scan, and arthroscopy. 

The diagnosis can tell whether the knee ligament injuries like ligament overstretch, partial ligament torn, and complete ligament torn are minor or severe. Minor knee ligament injuries (ligament overstretch pain) can be the first-grade ligament injury of knee. The second and the third grade (ligament partial cum complete ACL knee torn) can cause difficulty in walking.

Knee ligament injury treatment

Knee ligament injury is very common in athletes, more specifically in women athletes. Moderate to minor ligament injuries in the knee can be naturally treated by itself. The partial and complete ACL knee torn need to be treated with greater attention. The treatment process may seem like muscular-skeletal injuries. It is partially the same for the initial process but entirely different in ligament reconstruction surgeries. Here, we are with the treatment for knee ligament injury, which includes the following.

  • Ibuprofen is suggested to avoid pain and aches.
  • The initial treatment for the minor to moderate knee ligament injury is REST.
  • Resting the affected part is the prime thing expected from the patient.
  • To reduce the swelling, the ice-pack application is recommended.
  • Compression is given to the knee ligament injury.
  • Elevation can help reduce the pain.
  • Doctors suggest muscle strengthening exercises for the moderate ACL knee torn.
  • Protective cover for the knee
  • Guided physical therapy
  • The serious sprain or ACL knee torn need to be operated by an orthopedic surgeon to restore or reconstruct the injured ligaments.

The aforementioned knee ligament injury treatment can be the apt measures taken by the doctor to assist the ligament injuries in the knee. It can repair the damaged ligaments with appropriate surgery.

A-doctor-treating-a-man-with-knee-ligament-injury

Is knee ligament surgery required?

All the ligament injuries of the knee do not need surgery. Surgery is only for the ligament repair that has had all the initial treatment and has not delivered any positive outcome. A complete ligament tear or the third-grade ACL knee torn can no longer have a natural cure, so surgery remains a predominant force for the complete ligament tear’s healing. 

All ACL knee torn does not need surgery except the chronic pain-producing and soft tissue ligament damage with less blood supply in the knee. Sometimes, the tendency is to wait for the normal cure with no medication. This can bring emotional distress to the ligament injured patient. It is always better to consult the physician for a better treatment and if needed a surgery or else, the measures prescribed to be taken care.

Recovery time for knee ligament injury

Ligament injury in the knee has its own time for a comprehensive recovery. Soft tissues are very gentle, which gives a proper knee structure. It is they who give a frame to walk properly without stumbling. Unless and until it gets cured, the person with knee ligament injury may not be able to continue the normal life. 

The first-grade knee ligament injury can take 5 to 6 weeks for complete healing. While the partial ACL knee torn can take 3 to 5 months for a complete cure. The final phase of the third-grade ACL knee torn can take 5 to 9 months for a proper motion using mortar organs. We are in a busy world, moving with no patience. As the face is the mirror for your physique so also, the soft tissues are the structural engineers for the physique. So I recommend the readers to pay special attention to the ailing knee ligaments for creating good knee cure.

Final Thoughts

Despite the care administered to the body, people get into some sort of knee ligament injury. It may be ACL knee torn or partial torn of the cruciate ligaments. Sometimes, it may seem to be moderate and grade-1 knee ligament injury. All three types of ligament injuries in the knee can be treated by a proper diagnosis. 

Nobody embraces pain and suffering. It is so terrible to say that normal life comes to a halt as the casual injury takes place. Kindly avoid any careless move. Beware of every action you undertake. Be in the present with no reverie. 

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