Ligaments are tissues made up of fibrous bands of collagen, that join a bone to another bone. Stability and limited excess motion are what ligaments provide joints. The knee contains four main ligaments: the medial collateral (MCL), lateral collateral (LCL), anterior cruciate (ACL) and posterior cruciate (PCL) ligaments. Each of these ligaments performs a specific role in creating stability in the knee. If a ligament is injured, both the function and stability of the knee can be drastically reduced.
There are three grades of ligament damage:
Grade I is considered a sprain of the ligament. The actual ligament experiences no tear. Individuals with a grade I injury experience minimal symptoms, but may report feeling pain near the ligament and a tenderness to the touch. The knee may feel stiff. Activities that stress the joint may cause some discomfort.
Grade II injuries are partial tears of the ligament. Individuals may experience pain, tenderness, swelling and have difficulty flexing or extending the knee. There can be a feeling of the knee “giving out” and instability when performing twisting motions. There may also be some laxity or looseness of the joint when tested.
Grade III ligament injuries are full tears. Individuals can experience pain, swelling and loss of range of motion in the knee. There is a prominent feeling of instability and “giving out” of the knee when weight is placed on the joint. The use of a knee brace may be required to help stabilize, rest and heal the ligament and joint. There is significant laxity when the joint is tested.
Grade IV is called a “medial column injury” due to the injury affecting more than just the medial collateral ligament (for example: the meniscus or ACL). These injuries can require surgery. Grade IV injuries must be diagnosed by a specialist to identify the severity of the injury.
Dr. Freeman is a very caring, thorough and skilled doctor. The staff is fantastic. Glensi and Kim welcome you with a smile. Ana makes you feel like family when bringing you into the exam room or starting your EMG and Ronnie always returns your calls. I highly recommend Redefine Healthcare if you are experiencing pain.
If you think you have suffered this type of injury you should begin treatment by starting the following steps:
After an injury to the ACL, you should seek a full evaluation from a pain management specialist or licensed health care provider. Treatment may consist of the following:
Time frames for recovery vary depending on the severity of the injury. Grade I injuries may take from two to four weeks to completely recover. Grade II injuries can take up to four to six weeks. Grade III injuries, being more severe, also take the longest to heal – anywhere from three to four months. Since a Grade IV injury requires surgery, a physician will base recovery time on the injuries that have occurred.
I have been a patient of Dr Friedman for 11 years now, he has managed my pain with compassion and professionalism. I would recommend and have recommended him to anybody that is suffering from chronic pain. the staff is friendly the office is clean and modern , with state-of-the-art modalities.
Dr. Eric D. Freeman is a top-rated, best-in-class pain management doctor. He is a nationally recognized pain relief specialist and is among the top pain care doctors in New Jersey and the country. He is an award-winning expert and contributor to prominent media outlets.
Dr. Eric D. Freeman has been recognized for his thoughtful, thorough, modern approach to treating chronic pain. He has been named a “top pain management doctor in New Jersey” and one of “America’s Top Physicians” for advanced sports injury treatments.
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