The Anterior Cruciate Ligament (ACL) is one of the main ligaments in the human knee. Its importance is reflected from its function that connects (thigh bone) femur to (shin bone) tibia that ultimately stabilizes the human knee joint. In the modern era where sports demand high physical abilities, there is an increased chance of an ACL injury taking placed. As per research, women are more prone to ACL injury, with the ration being 9:1 compared to men.
ACL is mostly caused in games such as football, basketball, rugby, skiing and it’s the second most common knee injury. It is the top football knee injury that hampers player performance up to a great level. There are multiple signs for ACL injury which are a loss of range of motion, pop in the knee, swelling that begins after some time and hard pain that stops the ongoing activity. There are several risk factors that can be caused by ACL injury which is arthritis, worsening of the original injury or related injuries. This article is going to explain how an ACL injury can be treated and prevented.
Basic Treatment: When the person suffers from ACL injury he should use first air to reduce the swelling and pain. Some basic things can be done:
Appling Ice: Cover the ice with towel or cloth and apply it on the knee. It will relax the knee for pain.
Elastic Bandage: In order to restrict movement use elastic bandage around the damaged knee.
Reducing Motion of Knee: After the ACL injury, rest the knee by reducing its motion. Don’t make an unnecessary motion of the leg that can cause strain on the knee.
Elevating Knee: The person should elevate the knee by using a pillow under the knee.
Medicines to Consume: Acetaminophen or non-steroidal drugs which are anti-inflammatory can be consumed to reduce pain.
Rehabilitation: After suffering from ACL injury the knee is subjected to weeks of rehabilitative therapy. The rehabilitative therapist helps sportsman and athlete under his/her supervision. The brace can be used to stabilize knee and crutches could be used to prevent the weight from making affecting the knee. The strength of muscles is increased greatly and pain and swelling reduces gradually.
Surgery: People who suffer from severe ACL injury can be subjected to surgery. Surgery is not mandatory but it is required sometimes and doctors recommend surgery in following cases:
- Continuation of sport by the athlete
- More than one ligament is injured
- Injury is hampering day to day activities
- Person is young and active
Prevention of ACL Injury: One of the most basic ways to prevent ACL injury is to stretch the leg muscles. Different exercises can be used to stretch muscles mainly back and front muscles. The athlete should avoid wearing high-heeled shoes and sport with a lot of twisting. Knee braces can be worn and shouldn’t let an ACL injury hamper their sporting life. Keep Playing J