What is a ligament?
A tendon is a short band of rigid, stretchable, fibrous connective tissue that keeps a joint together, in this situation the knee. Four primary ligaments give solidness to the knee:
- The anterior cruciate ligament (ACL)
- The posterior cruciate ligament (PCL)
- The medial collateral ligament (MCL)
- The lateral collateral ligament (LCL)
What is a multiple ligament knee injury?
These occur when more than one of the ligaments holding the knee together gets torn. They occur very rarely but they are usually associated with injuries in sports activities and high-intensity accidents or falls.
How does one know about a multiple ligament knee injury?
Everyone who is in a doubt regarding a ligament knee injury should be examined by an orthopaedic surgeon. A complete diagnosis and assessment are essential, and they should be completed as soon as the injury has occurred. The examination includes:
- A physical checkup to know which ligaments are damaged.
- An examination of the skin and the damage to the soft tissues
- A neurovascular examination to determine any damage to the nerve.
X-rays are also taken to determine if any fractures or dislocations have occurred in the bones. An MRI scan is also suggested to confirm how many ligaments have torn and if there is any sort of injury that has occurred in other parts of the knee.
How can a Multiple Ligament Injury be Treated?
Mostly all Multiple Ligament injuries require surgery. The point of surgery is to:
- Re-establish knee solidity
- Recover motion
- Regaining fitness for future sports activity.
Right before the surgery, the patient is asked to go through physical therapy to lower the swelling in the knee and increase the movement of the knee. Most of the time the damaged tissues are replaced with one of the other tissues like hamstring tendons or a bone-patellar tendon. Only a few ligaments are reconstructed from outside sources using allograft tissue.
What can you expect after multiple ligament knee surgery?
Post-surgery, patients are made to attend physiotherapy sessions to gather strength and develop movement in their knees. The time of recovery is usually dependent on the number of ligaments that were torn and if there is an injury associated with the cartilage.
In such a situation, it is critical to speak with your doctor to ensure a smooth recovery. Looking for the best orthopaedic around? Dr Debashish Chanda is your answer. To get in touch with him, contact us today!