What injuries does the anterior cruciate ligament prevent?

Knee instability. The anterior cruciate ligament (acl) is one of four major ligaments in the knee to help maintain knee stability (the others include the posterior cruciate ligament - pcl, lateral collateral ligament - lcl, and the medial collateral ligament - mcl). The ACL is the most significant of the four and helps prevent the lower leg from sliding forward from the upper leg.
Medial meniscus tear. Absence of an anterior cruciate ligament (acl) allows rotation and sliding of the knee. This sliding squeezes and stresses the medial meniscus (which attemps to prevent this sliding and rotating motion). Each time an acl deficient person twists the knee and tears the medial meniscus, swelling from the damage occurs. Over time, this can also contribute to arthritis resulting in loss of the meniscus.

Related Questions

How can you prevent anterior cruciate ligament (acl) injury?

Neuromuscular traini. Research has shown that the incidence of non-contact ACL injury can be reduced anywhere from 20% to 80% by engaging in regular neuromuscular training that is designed to enhance proprioception, balance, proper movement patterns and muscle strength. Read more...
Train neuromuscular. There is evidence to show that neuromuscular training including plyometrics, balance, and technique training, as well as heightened awareness of injury biomechanics, reduce the risk of serious injury in female athletes. What specific exericises, sequence, intensity and duration remains unknown. Read more...

I think my child may have anterior cruciate ligament injury. What would that mean?

Needs to be evaluate. Cruciate injuries in children though rare do occur.Would need to know a lot more before giving specific advice. Growth plate injuries are more likely in kids and sometimes injuries to the tibial spine can mimic acl injuriy. Read more...
Orthopedic consult. The anterior cruciate ligament is a key ligament in the knee for stability both going front and back as well as rotationally. Your child would have complaints of giving way, pain, swelling and lack of confidence in using that knee during activity. I recommend you see your local orthopedic surgeon and if possible one fellowship trained in sports medicine. Read more...

What can I do to decrease the odds of developing anterior cruciate ligament injury?

Optimize mechanics. In young females there is good evidence that therapy programs designed to optimize knee/body mechanics with activities that involve cutting and jumping can reduce the incidence of acl injuries. Developed programs are more likely found around larger cities. Alternatively one could avoid activities associated wtih higher incidence of acl injury (basketball, soccer, football, down-hill skiing, etc). Read more...
A few ideas... Sometimes, plain bad luck leads to an acl injury. Missing a step, tripping and falling, playing with a child, etc. That being said, there are things you can do to minimize your risk of tearing your acl: avoid contact sports such as tackle football and rugby. Avoid skiing. Work on strengthening the muscles about your knee, including your hamstrings and quadriceps. Read more...

What are the symptoms of anterior cruciate ligament injury I should be looking for?

Instability. The hallmark of an acl deficient knee is instability or giving way of the knee with higher level activities involving cutting, jumping, pivoting, etc. Some individuals may experience this with routine day to day activities. The initial injury is often described as feeling a "pop" in the knee and followed by development of considerable swelling and variable pain. Read more...
Instability. Pain, swelling, and mostly instability. Buckling or shifting of the knee, as if it is dislocating when you change directions. The knee can appear normal outwardly most of the time with normal activities. Read more...
Pain and instability. Pain and an unstable feeling especially with pivoting type activities may indicate an acl injury. Read more...

My sister was diagnosed with anterior cruciate ligament injury. What do I need to know?

Ortho consult. Acl tears are common. People who manage poorly with a torn acl are younger, active people particularly those involved in pivoting or contact sports. Initial treatment is to decrease swelling and regain motion. After that, a discussion with an ortho surgeon is important to review non-surg vs surg options. Read more...
Need to know all opt. Would suggest you check with your doctor and get all the pros and cons of the treatment course planned before you decide, check to see what concomittent injuries there are , her activity/athletic demands. Read more...

What sort of problem is an anterior cruciate ligament (a.C.L.) injury?

Ligament sprain/tear. The acl is a ligament inside the knee that helps to keep the knee stable - keeps it from moving too far forward or backward. It works with the posterior cruciate ligament (pcl) to accomplish this. The acl is often injured when running or other fast movements when the lower leg is planted on the ground and the knee is bent and twisted. It can be a strain or sprain or a complete tear. Read more...
Knee instability. When you tear the acl, you lose one of the stabilizing ligaments in your knee. That can allow your knee to become unstable or shift with certain movements. A knee that keeps on shifting can wind up damaging other structures (the meniscus or articular cartilage). Some people can rehab their knee and may not need an acl reconstruction, while others will need a reconstruction even for daily activity. Read more...

What is done for an anterior cruciate ligament injury?

Immobilization. Initially one is treated non operatively with immobilization with velcro-type knee immobilizer. Graded range of motion then physical therapy. Read more...
Torn or sprained? It depends on if it was fully torn or sprained. If fully torn, may need arthroscopic acl reconstruction (surgery via 'scope'). If sprained, can rehab with physical therapy and use a knee brace. Read more...

How do you treat an anterior cruciate ligament injury?

Reconstruct if torn. Most anterior cruciate ligament injuries that are complete tears end up being reconstructed by bringing in new tissue to rebuild the torn ligament and to hopefully return full function to the knee and injured patient. Read more...

How long should anterior cruciate ligament injury last?

Depends. If a complete acl tear is not surgically reconstructed, the injury never heals back together. Sometimes without surgery, patients have enough stability to function fairly well. Surgery is performed when indicated to reconstruct the torn ligament. Read more...