Orthopaedics, Spine & Podiatry Practice located in Hazlet, Old Bridge, & Middletown, NJ
It’s estimated that nearly half of all patients with an ACL tear suffer a complete rupture of the ligament, an injury that requires prompt medical treatment to ensure full healing and recovery. At Ani Orthopaedics in Hazlet and Old Bridge, New Jersey, we have extensive experience repairing ACL tears. While we use nonsurgical means whenever possible, you can count on his skill in reconstructing ruptured ACLs to achieve optimal outcomes. To schedule an appointment, call Ani Orthopaedics or schedule an appointment online today.
ACL Tear Q & A
What causes an ACL tear?
Your knee joint is supported by four ligaments — two collateral and two cruciate ligaments — that hold the bones together and stabilize the joint.
The anterior cruciate ligament (ACL) is located in the center of your knee, where it controls the rotation and prevents forward movement of the shinbone (tibia) in relation to the thigh bone (femur). Of all the knee ligaments, the ACL is among the most injured. Although ligaments are commonly injured due to a direct blow, the ACL may also be injured from non-contact and such movements as:
- Making a sudden stop
- Quickly changing your direction
- Landing a jump incorrectly
- Pivoting and sidestepping maneuvers
- Slowing down while running
Sports such as basketball, football, and soccer carry the greatest risk of ACL injury.
What symptoms develop following an ACL tear?
The first symptom of a torn ACL is often a popping sound or sensation and commonly immediate swelling of the knee. You’ll also develop other symptoms, including:
- Knee instability
- Loss of motion
- Difficulty walking
- Knee buckling
- Tenderness along the joint
Symptoms such as pain, swelling, and instability usually appear immediately after tearing your ACL. About half of all patients with an ACL tear sustain other injuries in the knee, including damage to the meniscus and cartilage.
How is an ACL tear treated?
The doctor customizes each patient’s treatment based on the severity of the injury, amount of knee instability, and their overall health. Following diagnostic imaging to assess the location and extent of the ACL tear, the doctor recommends treatment that may include:
The ligament may heal with nonsurgical treatment in patients with a mild or partial ACL tear and a stable knee joint. Their treatment plan may include rest, bracing, and activity modification. After the swelling goes down, they can begin individualized rehabilitation.
The doctor may recommend surgical intervention when your ligament is completely torn, the joint is unstable, or other structures in the knee have also been damaged. Surgery may be necessary for the recovery of full knee function for competitive athletes and those with significant instability.
ACL tears seldom heal properly when they’re stitched back together. The doctor repairs this type of injury by reconstructing the torn ligament with a tissue graft. This tissue graft may be harvested elsewhere in your body (called an autograft) or a donor graft (called an allograft) may be used. The advantages and disadvantages of the different grafts will be a part of your surgical treatment discussion.
As soon as you suspect an ACL tear or knee injury, call Ani Orthopaedics or use online booking to schedule an appointment.
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