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What Is The Mcl In The Knee

Causes Of Medial Collateral Ligament Injury

How long does it take an MCL injury of the knee to heal?

An MCL injury is usually caused by your knee being pushed inwards . This may happen if you have a direct blow to the outside of your leg, which can happen during sports such as rugby. You can also injure your MCL by twisting your knee for instance, in skiing, or from repeated stress on your knee such as in breast stroke when swimming. You can also injure the MCL if you fall.

You can access a range of treatments on a pay as you go basis, including physiotherapy. Find out more about physiotherapy >

Medial Collateral Ligament Injury Of The Knee

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What is a medial collateral ligament injury?

The medial collateral ligament is located on the inner aspect, or part, of your knee, but its outside the joint itself. Ligaments hold bones together and add stability and strength to a joint.

The MCL connects the top of the tibia, or shinbone, to the bottom of the femur, or thighbone.

An injury to the MCL is often called an MCL sprain. Ligament injuries can either stretch the ligament or tear it. MCL injury of the knee is usually caused by a direct blow to the knee. This type of injury is common in contact sports.

Its usually the result of a hit or blow to the outer aspect of the knee, which stretches or tears the MCL.

Is Yoga Good For Bad Knees

Yoga is a low-impact exercise, this means that it will increase middle fee while minimizing the quantity of stress at the joints. Its just right for other people with knee pain because it might probably cut back chronic pain while making improvements to mobility, physical health, and general quality of existence.

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Is Climbing Stairs Good For Knees

Both of these large muscle teams get a exercise when you climb stairs. Your personal weight is sufficient to make stair mountaineering a challenge. Stair mountaineering additionally advantages the knees indirectly by means of serving to to regulate your weight. By strolling up steps for just 5 mins, you can burn about 45 calories.

What Pain Medication Should One Take For An Mcl Tear

Medial Collateral Ligament (MCL) Injuries

An MCL tear involves disruption of collagen fibers and healing of these fibers is important to return one back to activity. Therefore, with a complete MCL tear, the use of anti-inflammatory medications like ibuprofen or Naprosyn may potentially slow down the healing. Therefore, we generally recommend that one use acetaminophen as the initial medication for an MCL tear. In addition, the use of the anti-inflammatory medications right after injury may make the bleeding worse, which could prolong ones ability to return back to activities. If one does have severe pain from an MCL tear, icing it down and applying some compression may help to decrease this pain. If one needs a higher level of pain medications, then one should see a physician for assessment as to whether there are other concurrent injuries or if one does need different medications to treat their injury.

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How Can I Treat An Mcl At Home

First, it is important to make sure that you truly only have an MCL injury as part of the diagnosis. If one does have other things going on with the knee, especially an ACL tear or a meniscus tear, these have to be assessed as far of the determination as to the best rehabilitation program. When one does have a diagnosis of an isolated MCL tear, one should work on icing the area to try to minimize swelling, use crutches as needed until one can walk without a limp, and avoid any side-to-side activities which could cause the MCL to heal in an elongated position. Ideally, one should have a hinged knee brace if one does have a grade 2 or grade 3 MCL tear to treat this. As mentioned earlier, the use of a stationary bike is very effective at helping the collagen fibers with a torn MCL to line up correctly and based on our experience with athletes, it appears it also heals quicker. Therefore, once ones knee can tolerate it without any pain or swelling, the use of a stationary bike can be effective to help an MCL tear to heal.

How Do You Treat A Sprained Mcl At Home

Most MCL injuries will also be treated at house with leisure, ice, and anti inflammatory medicine. Your physician would possibly counsel that you use crutches and wear a brace that protects however permits for some movement of your knee. You would possibly wish to cut back your task for a few weeks.

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Lateral Collateral Ligament Injury

Your LCL connects the bottom of your femur to the top of your fibula on the outside of your knee.

It is responsible for providing stability to the outside of your knee.

An LCL injury occurs when that ligament is stretched or torn.

Concerned about a knee injury? Book an assessment with a physiotherapist today.

How Is An Mcl Tear Diagnosed

Medial Collateral Ligament MCL Knee Injury Assesment Techniques

In most cases, a healthcare provider can tell if you have a torn MCL by doing a physical exam on your knee. If your provider thinks you may have an MCL tear, they’ll bend your knee and apply pressure on it to see if your knee is loose. Your provider may have you undergo imaging tests to make sure you dont have any other injuries in your knee and to see how severe your MCL tear is.

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Types Of Mcl Injuries

MCL injuries can be grades 1, 2, or 3:

  • A grade 1 MCL injury is the least severe. It means that your ligament has been stretched but not torn.
  • A grade 2 MCL injury means that your ligament has been partially torn. This usually causes some instability in your knee joint.
  • A grade 3 MCL injury is the most severe type of ligament injury. It occurs when your ligament has been completely torn. Joint instability is common in a grade 3 MCL sprain.

The symptoms of an MCL injury are similar to symptoms of other knee problems. Its important for your doctor to examine your knee to determine the problem.

The symptoms of an MCL injury may include:

  • a popping sound upon injury
  • pain and tenderness along the inner part of your knee
  • swelling of the knee joint
  • a feeling that your knee is going to give out when you put weight on it
  • locking or catching in the knee joint

Problems with knee stability typically indicate grade 2 or grade 3 injuries.

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Knee Anatomy In 15 Minutesknee Joint Meniscus

Need for More Accurate ER Diagnoses of ACL Injuries. Its primary function is to resist outward turning forces on the knee. It is on the medial side of the knee joint in humans and other primates. Most people feel pain along the inside edge of the knee, and they also have swelling. The medial collateral ligament , or tibial collateral ligament , is one of the four major ligaments of the knee.

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What Questions Should I Ask My Doctor

If you have an MCL tear, it could be helpful to ask your healthcare provider the following questions:

  • What kind of MCL tear do I have?
  • What are my treatment options?
  • How long do you predict it will take me to recover?
  • What medications should I take?
  • Do I need to see a specialist?
  • Should I see a sports medicine specialist?
  • When can I return to my sport?
  • What are the pros and cons of surgery to repair my MCL tear?

A note from Cleveland Clinic

Although it can be upsetting to not be able to play your sport, an MCL tear will only temporarily prevent you from playing the sports and doing the activities you love. Recovering from an MCL tear depends on your willingness to follow your healthcare teams treatment plan, which will likely include resting, using crutches and committing to physical therapy. The more you commit to your treatment plan, the better your MCL will be able to heal.

How Does One Determine Between An Mcl Tear Or A Medial Meniscus Tear

MCL tear: Symptoms, diagnosis, and treatment

Determining between a medial meniscus tear and an MCL tear requires a careful assessment. First, the mechanism of injury can often determine if one has an MCL tear. If there is no significant blow or ones leg did not fall inwards, then there is a lesser likelihood that there was an MCL tear that is causing the problem. Palpation of the joint line can also help determine the difference between an MCL tear and a meniscus tear. The MCL will usually hurt directly over the ligament itself, whereas pain in the front or behind the MCL it often can be a meniscus tear. In addition, if one gaps open, one commonly has an MCL tear. The occurrence of medial meniscus tears with an MCL tear, when there are no other ligament tears in the knee, is relatively uncommon and potentially the only way to determine that is to obtain an MRI scan to be sure if one is concerned about this concurrent pathology.

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What Are The Symptoms Of A Complex Knee Ligament Injury

In order to damage more than one ligament the knee will have dislocated at the moment of injury. Even if it immediately pops back into place the ligament damage can remain.

This means that injuries can present as obviously dislocated knees requiring immediate manipulation to simply restore the shape of the leg . Alternatively, the injury may first appear to be minor but with increased pain and/or swelling. Sometimes it can take time for a patient to seek help, usually when they realise their knee feels unstable .

Pain is usually more severe than with simple injuries and sometimes the injury can involve the blood vessels supplying the lower leg or a vital nerve leading to temporary or permanent foot drop.

Physiotherapy For Medial Collateral Ligament Injury

Your physiotherapist will carefully assess your knee and then plan a programme of rehabilitation exercises to suit your individual needs. The aim of physiotherapy is to help your knee recover its full range of movement, and its strength and stability. This should help you get full function back in your knee and return to your usual sports and activities. Make sure you do the exercises as they will be an important part of your recovery. Often, knee bracing and treatment with physiotherapy will be all you need if you have an MCL injury.

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When Does An Mcl Tear Need Surgery

Most MCL tears that occur with multiple ligament injuries need surgery. In addition, those MCL tears which completely tear off the femur and the knee gaps open with the knee out straight, or where the MCL tears off the tibia and retracts towards the joint line, have a high requirement for needing surgery. Other types of MCL tears generally heal, but they do not all heal so they should be followed closely and it should be determined if one has any significant functional limitations to decide if one does need a surgical procedure.

Medial Collateral Ligament Vs Meniscal Injury: How Can You Tell

MCL Knee Ligament Injury Health Byte

Generally, an MCL injury occurs at the top attachment to the femur. So, pain and swelling are above the joint line. On the other hand, a medial meniscal tear causes pain in the medial joint line below the top attachment of the MCL. Also, a meniscal tear can cause general swelling of the knee, giving way or locking. Therefore, differentiating between the two problems requires a careful examination by a specialised doctor.

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Why Should I Consider Mcl Surgery

If someone has a complete tear of the MCL conservative treatment may be an option. The leg would have to be placed in a knee immobilizer, typically locked in full extension, for several weeks to allow scar tissue to form and repair the MCL. After scar tissue has formed, the patient will need to attend physical therapy to strengthen the surrounding musculature. Surgical treatment involves repair of the MCL or reattachment of the ligament to the bone. Surgical repair is not done arthroscopically it is an open procedure. Surgical repair is preferred for athletes that require excessive amounts of twisting and pivoting at the knee joint.

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Diagnosing An Mcl Injury

Your physician will need to first examine your knee by bending or applying pressure to the outside of the joint. This will also tell them if your knee is loose.

From there, an orthopaedic surgeon will likely order imaging tests to get a look at your knee joint. An X-ray will show them the bones in your knee while an MRI scan will give them a closer look at your ligaments. For patients with claustrophobia or anxiety, an open MRI scan can be ordered in certain locations.

Once your orthopaedic physician has reviewed your scans and completed the physical examination, they will classify your MCL tear as one of the following grades:

  • Grade I: A partial MCL tear
  • Grade II: A near complete MCL tear
  • Grade III: A complete MCL tear with a non-functional ligament

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What Are The Symptoms Of Mcl Injury

An MCL tear occurs with a wrenching or twisting injury.

It is painful when it happens. You may feel a tearing sensation and there may be some swelling and pain on the inner aspect of the knee.

If the whole knee swells up rapidly, it is probably more than just an MCL injury.

With an MCL injury, X-rays might appear normal unless a fragment of bone is pulled off.

Sometimes an excessive gap between the bones on the inner aspect will be apparent.

MRI scans will show up MCL tears, as will ultrasound scans, but they are not always necessary

X-rays might be normal, unless a fragment of bone is pulled off. Sometimes an excessive gap between the bones on the inner aspect will be apparent.

MRI scans will show up MCL tears, as will ultrasound scans, but they are not always necessary.

Medial Knee Ligament Sprain Treatment Rehab & Exercises

Medial Collateral Ligament (MCL) Tears

MCL Tear: What You Need To Know Knee Pain Explained. Its primary function is to resist outward turning forces on the knee. The medial collateral ligament , or tibial collateral ligament , is one of the four major ligaments of the knee. It is on the medial side of the knee joint in humans and other primates. Most people feel pain along the inside edge of the knee, and they also have swelling.

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What Are Mcl Surgery Post

Following MCL surgery, the patient will be placed in a knee immobilizer that is locked in slight flexion . The brace can be unlocked at the discretion of the doctor and physical therapist. With the brace locked in flexion, the patient will be non-weight bearing with the use of crutches for 4-6 weeks. The brace can be slowly unlocked to increase range of motion at the knee at the doctor or therapistâs discretion. Once the patient is permitted to weight-bear, strengthening, range of motion, and balance, are key areas that are addressed in therapy. Aggressive therapy usually does not occur until 12 weeks after surgery. It is important to realize that it may take up to a year for a patient to have full recovery following surgical repair of the MCL.

How Do You Treat Pcl Injuries

Where the PCL is the only injury physiotherapy will usually be sufficient. If the diagnosis is made within a week or so, a special brace might be used to hold the tibia forwards while some healing occurs. Surgery is not usually required.

The prognosis following these injuries is good but some patients do develop pain behind the knee cap over many years, because of increased load on that joint. Nevertheless, many people with this injury return to full activities including high-level sport.

PCL injuries combined with other ligament damage, however, usually produce instability problems which typically require surgical reconstruction.

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What Is The Mcl & What Does It Do

The medial collateral ligament is a broad ligament which sits on the inner side of the knee, connecting the thigh bone and shin bone.

The MCL helps stabilise the bones of the knee joint. It prevents excessive movement of the shin bone, limiting outwards movement relative to the thigh bone.

MCL injury is the commonest of all knee ligament injuries. It may occur in isolation, or in combination with ACL rupture, meniscal tears, complex ligament injury, or fracture.

What Causes Tears In The Medial Collateral Ligament

Torn MCL / Sprained Knee

Injuries to the medial collateral ligament most often happen when the knee is hit directly on its outer side. This stretches the ligaments on the inside of the knee too far or can tear them.

It is not uncommon for athletes to suffer tears of the medial collateral ligament and anterior cruciate ligament at the same time. The ligament also can be injured through repeated stress. This causes the ligament to lose its normal stretch and elasticity similar to a worn-out rubber band.

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Acute Injury: Operative Treatment

Though the majority of isolated medial-sided knee injuries can be managed nonoperatively with good results, surgeons may consider operative interventions in specific situations involving complete ligament disruption. Examples include the presence of intraarticular entrapment of the end of the ligament, a large bony avulsion, a tibial plateau fracture, a complete tibial side avulsion in athletes, or when anteromedial rotatory instability is present on physical examination .,, In addition, valgus-aligned knees with complete medial injury likely would benefit from acute repair, since these knees do not tolerate the valgus laxity well. The authors’ summary of operative indications for medial-sided knee injuries is shown in .

Figure 5

A MRI study in an acute injury reveals complete rupture of the superficial and deep MCL from the tibia. The medial meniscus is displaced medially with entrapment of the distal part of the avulsed ligament underneath it . Severe hemarthrosis is seen. Please note the bone bruise at the lateral aspect of the lateral femoral condyle suggesting a valgus mechanism .


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