If you’re an athlete who regularly plays sports, you know that the many twists and turns your body makes when you’re active can sometimes cause you pain. An awkward landing or a misstep can result in significant pain and swelling of your knee, often the result of a torn ACL. At his Jersey City and Rock Glen, New Jersey, surgical practices, Deepan Patel, MD, a fellow-trained surgeon, offers advanced diagnostic and treatment options to repair ACL tears and get you back to your active lifestyle with a stronger, more stable knee. Call or schedule an appointment online to learn more.
The anterior cruciate ligament (ACL) is one of the four main ligaments in your knee that connects your femur to the tibia. The ACL runs diagonally through the middle of the knee to keep the tibia from moving in front of the femur, and in general, provides stability to your knee during rotation.
The ACL is a ligament most commonly injured during high-risk activities, especially if you participate in soccer, football, basketball, downhill skiing, and other sports. Injuries are often the result of improper or awkward movements, such as sidestepping, pivoting, or a bad landing in a fall.
Symptoms indicating a torn ACL often start soon after the injury. You may experience knee swelling and pain and find it difficult to put weight on your knee while standing.
Several hours after the injury, you may have:
Because these symptoms can indicate another type of injury, Dr. Patel accurately diagnoses an ACL tear by first using X-rays to rule out a fracture or break, and then confirming an ACL tear through an MRI.
Once Dr. Patel confirms an ACL tear, he may initially try progressive physical therapy and recommend up to three months of rest to allow the ligament to heal without surgery. You may need to wear a hinged knee brace to stabilize your knee and prevent re-injury. Physical therapy also provides you with the opportunity to learn how to stabilize your knee during future activities.
Dr. Patel may recommend surgery if physical therapy is not beneficial, especially if you have other types of knee injuries. To surgically repair a torn ACL, Dr. Patel uses a tendon graft from another area of your body to ensure the ligament is stable.
If you have a torn ACL with significant knee instability, Dr. Patel may recommend ACL reconstruction surgery, using the minimally invasive arthroscopy procedure.
During an arthroscopy, Dr. Patel inserts a fiber optic telescope with an attached camera that transmits images to an external monitor. This instrument allows Dr. Patel to see your ACL up close during the repair.
This minimally invasive technique offers many benefits, including more effective results and a faster recovery time than traditional surgeries.
Book a consultation online or by phone with Dr. Patel to learn more about available treatments for a torn ACL.