An anterior cruciate ligament (ACL) is one of the main ligaments that connect the thigh bone to the shin bone of the knee. It offers rotational stability to the knee and prevents the tibia from sliding in front of the femur.
ACL tears are common amongst knee injuries. They are experienced by sports persons who are involved in jumping, changing direction and sudden stops in sports such as football, basketball, soccer, and skiing. They may also happen from road accidents, dancing, and some recreational activities.
How do you know if you have an ACL injury?
You may experience:
- A loud popping sensation in the knee
- Stiffness or swelling
- Instability in the knee
- Pain in the knee
- Loss of range of motion
For minor ACL tears, you may not experience any severe symptoms immediately. But they will worsen with time.
Non-surgical treatments are advisable to less active individuals and elderly people. They include physiotherapy and exercise rehabilitation to improve the range of motion and strengthen the knee.
Surgical treatment is advised to young and active individuals. Surgery is Arthroscopic ACL reconstruction either by Hamstring tendon autograft or Patellar tendon autograft.