Anterior cruciate ligament (ACL) injury refers to a tear in one of the four ligaments that connects the thigh bone with the shin bone. ACL provides stability to the knee and aids in its flexing and extending.
Injury of the ACL may be mild, with a partial tear, or severe, with a complete rupture of the ligament. If left untreated, movement of the knee is affected.
Lack of treatment may result in the bones rubbing each other. Tearing of the ligament causes swelling and pain in the knees.
This injury is common in sports that involve sudden direction changes, like soccer, basketball and skiing.
Treatment of ACL injuries focus on regaining the strength and stability of the knees. Rehabilitation is also an important part of the treatment in order to enable the patient to get back to his/her normal routine.
Some of the early symptoms of ACL injury include:
A characteristic snap at the time of injury
Swelling of the knee within few hours of injury
Pain that increases when trying to put pressure on the knee
Bleeding at the joint causes swelling and this makes it difficult to straighten the knee after injury.
Pain and swelling will continue and makes walking and climbing hard. Knee may feel unstable and movement may be limited.
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