Anterior Cruciate Ligament Injuries

Anatomy: knee.png

  • The knee is the largest joint in the body and it’s made of a double condyloid joint that includes the distal femur, proximal tibia, and patella bones.
  • There are two types of ligaments- collateral and cruciate. The collateral ones are medial and lateral, and the cruciate are posterior and anterior.

Functions:

  • It resists excessive anterior movement of tibia on femur.
  • It prevents hyperextension.
  • It aids resistance of excessive valgus stress.

ACL Injuries:knee2.png

  • Very common sports injury-in the UK, majority from football, but this is due to the sheer number of people who play football. You’re more likely to tear your ACL in a sport like taekwando that involves a lot of pivoting.
  • It can occur in isolation or in combination with a meniscus or MCL
    (medial collateral ligament) tear.
  • If left untreated then it can lead to instability, degeneration, or meniscal injuries.
  • Symptoms include an audible pop or sensation, extreme pain and swelling within an hour.

ACL Injuries and Women:

  • Women are 3-6 times more likely to injure their ACL than men, but statistically more men injure their ACL because more play sport.
  • Anatomically; women have a wider pelvis and the intracondylar notch is narrower (where the ACL starts)
  • Hormonal; progesterone has an effect on the tensile strength of ligaments and tendons
  • Neuromuscular; women can’t control their knees as well as men?
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