Whether it was a bad landing after a slam dunk or a tackle that caught you unexpectedly, chances are you know exactly when you tore your anterior cruciate ligament (ACL). Dr. Thomas Baylis and his team know the importance of proper ACL tear treatment. At Premier Orthopaedics & Sports Medicine in Hattiesburg, Mississippi, Dr. Baylis offers a range of services from physical therapy to surgery. To keep your knees as healthy as possible, contact a board-certified sports medicine specialist after an ACL injury. Call today to schedule or book your appointment online now.
Your anterior cruciate ligament (ACL) and your posterior cruciate ligament cross diagonally across your knee to form an “X.” Your ACL is responsible for rotational knee stability and keeping your tibia (shin bone) from sliding in front of your femur (thigh bone).
There are multiple things that can injure or tear your ACL. In many cases, it’s caused during a sporting injury when your knees bends the wrong way due to:
When you tear your ACL, you may hear or feel a pop and have sudden pain in your knee, typically around the outside and in the back. The knee may swell within a few hours and become hard to move. It may also feel like your knee is weak and unstable, and it may buckle when you bear weight on it.
You may have a small ACL tear, or a tear that cuts through the entire ligament (rupture) or pulls your ACL from the bone.
The severity of your ACL tear, as well as the general health of your knee and your activity level, determine the best course of treatment.
Immediate first aid can reduce symptoms, and Dr. Baylis recommends keeping the knee elevated and icing it to reduce swelling. Use an elastic bandage to compress the knee and take an over-the-counter pain reliever for any discomfort.
Dr. Baylis treats minor ACL tears with rest and physical therapy that focuses on strengthening your knee and improving flexibility. It can take a few weeks to a few months for ACL injuries to fully improve.
In more severe cases, Dr. Baylis may suggest surgery. This repairs the ACL and restores stability in the knee. If severe ACL tears are left untreated, it can lead to chronic ACL deficiency.
If you’ve injured your ACL, don’t wait to get help. Call Dr. Baylis’s office today to schedule an appointment or book it online.