I’m sure you have heard in the sporting news about sportsmen or women sustaining the dreaded anterior cruciate ligament rupture. So what exactly is your anterior cruciate ligament?
Your ACL provides major stability to your knee. Your ACL basically prevents the tibia sliding forwards on the femur and also provides rotational stability to the knee.
About half of all anterior cruciate ligament injuries occur along with damage to other structures in the knee such as cartlidge or other ligaments.
The cruciate ligament can be injured in a number of ways. Most injuries actually occur without any trauma, usually from a twist or a bad landing from a jump or tackle. It is common to hear a pop or crack in your knee and immediate swelling.
An ACL tear is usually treated through surgical reconstruction. The torn ligament is replaced with a tissue graft, usually from the hamstrings or patella tendon.
If the the ACL is repaired surgically or not, physiotherapy plays a massive part in the rehabilitation process. Sticking to a comprehensive rehab programme is vital for the best outcome. For an average individual return to straight line running can start after 3 months and a return to contact sports usually takes between 6 and 9 months.