The ACL, which is the anterior cruciate ligament, is an important ligament which is located in front of your knee, right behind the kneecap. This ligament provides knee stability along with its crisscrossed-in-back partner, the PCL (posterior cruciate ligament). They are called the “cruciate” ligaments because they cross each other in the shape of an X to provide support to the knee in all of its movements.
An ACL tear is one of the most common types of knee injuries because of its vulnerable location toward the front of the knee. The ligament can be partially torn or fully torn, and recovery of the tear will likely involve a lengthy recovery period.
Treatment for a torn ACL depends on its severity and the patient’s health. However, treatment is typically done through physical therapy, outpatient arthroscopic surgery, or a combination of both.
How Can I Recover from a Torn ACL?
There might be times when you feel overwhelmed and frustrated by the recovery process. Here are some tips that will guide you through a speedy recovery for your knee injury:
Use Crutches or Wear Braces to Keep Your Knee Stable
Patients are sometimes hesitant to wear braces or to use crutches – it can make you feel awkward and vulnerable. However, if you want to shorten your recovery period, then it is best to walk with the help of crutches or a brace on your knee for a few weeks.
Once your knee is regaining its strength, you may seek the advice of your doctor regarding the necessity of these supports. You do not want to put undue pressure on your knee by trying to walk without these aids too soon, or the ACL may not heal properly.
Engage in Physical Therapy Exercises
Whether or not you had surgery to repair your torn ACL, physical therapy is a must if you aim to recover quickly and fully. Your therapist will show you how to perform various exercises, and how to increase them gradually without causing pain in your knee.
Take note that a one-size-fits-all program does not exist in these kinds of scenarios; your ACL recovery will be different than when your friend had the same injury. The activities and strategies your therapist will give you will significantly depend on your age and fitness level.
Follow Your Doctor’s Instructions After ACL Surgery
If your ACL is fully torn, you will probably require surgery. Fortunately, this operation is usually done on an outpatient basis, so you will likely be able to go home later on the same day of your surgery. You will then receive a list of specific instructions from your surgeon.
Be sure to adhere to their recommendations in order to avoid any mishaps in your recovery process. Do not be afraid to ask if you need to clarify their instructions.
ACL Tear Treatment in North Dakota
Recovering from an ACL injury can be quite a process. If you follow the doctor’s orders and the therapist’s instructions, and use walking aids in order to avoid putting pressure on the injured knee, you will be able to resume your regular activities more quickly.
If you have injured your knee or have chronic musculoskeletal pain, such as from arthritis, come see us at The Bone & Joint Center. Our experienced orthopedic doctors are here for you when it comes to joint replacement, rotator cuff repair, a torn ACL, fractures, joint pain, and physical and occupational therapy.
To schedule an appointment, contact us today by calling us at (800) 424-2663 or by filling out our online appointment form now. We look forward to seeing you!