Medial Collateral Ligament (MCL) Injury

Medial Collateral Ligament injury — also known as MCL injury — results when the ligament connecting the femur and tibia tears or stretches. Pain occurring on the inner side of your knee could be the result of an MCL tear or sprain.

What You Need To Know About Medial Collateral Ligament (MCL) Injury

What is MCL Injury?

The health of your medial collateral ligament plays a vital role in stabilizing knee movement and keeping the knee in place. The MCL helps keep your upper and lower leg aligned properly. The band of tissues (MCL) stretches from your femur (or thigh bone) to part of your shinbone and prevents your knee from bending into painful positions.

An MCL tear can occur when the thick band of tissue on the inner edge of your knee twists, bends or extends too far. MCL injuries are common among athletes who participate in sports that involve abrupt stops, falls, or changes in direction.

Finding relief for your MCL sprain starts with a visit to Resurgens Orthopaedics. Our expert knee physicians can help diagnose and alleviate the causes of your pain. Schedule a consultation with Georgia's knee experts now!

What Causes MCL Injury?

There is no single cause of MCL injury. Commonly, MCL injuries result from swift shifting in direction or quick start-and-stop exercises. Injuries can also occur when an object strikes the outer edge of the knee, causing an inner tear of the MCL.

MCL injuries are classified individually based on the amount of pain you experience and the proper treatment for your pain. When injured, MCL pain can vary depending on the severity of the injury. Occasionally, rest and rehab can quickly cure MCL tear symptoms, but in more serious cases, surgery may be required.

MCL Injury Symptoms

Because your knees are so essential to movement, there are many ways that a torn MCL may affect you.

Common symptoms of MCL Injury include:

  • Knee stiffness

  • Pain when walking or performing a movement that requires the knee to bend.

  • Swelling around your knee

  • Bruising

  • Weakness in the knee

  • Tenderness

Getting the best treatment for your MCL injury starts with a visit to Resurgens Orthopedics.

How is MCL Injury Diagnosed?

During your appointment to Resurgens Orthopaedics, a physician will ask about your medical history and the acquisition of your injury. They may also test your ability to move your knee fluently or apply gentle pressure to the inner and outer edge of the knee to detect whether your MCL is torn or stretched.

Additionally, diagnostic imaging may be used to pinpoint the severity of your MCL injury and diagnose the best treatment plan. Our physicians will then discern what steps to take to amend your torn or stretched MCL.

MCL Injury Treatment

Once the stage of MCL injury has been determined, your Resurgens physicians will put together a plan for your recovery. Often, MCL injuries can be treated simply with ice, leg elevation, rest, and minimal physical therapy once the pain has subsided. Anti-inflammatory drugs like Tylenol may also be prescribed for treating pains associated with your injury.

A break from ordinary physical activities may be required during the healing process. Occasionally, you may need to use crutches to prevent adding pressure to the injured area or wear a knee brace to help guide your knee while the MCL heals.

Only in extreme cases will surgery be necessary, typically when other parts of the knee are broken or damaged around the MCL.

No matter the severity of your MCL injury, we are here to provide the best plan for your recovery. We look forward to helping you restore the range of movement to your MCL and to developing more comfort and support for your knee.

Schedule an MCL sprain consultation at one of our Metro Atlanta locations now!

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Resurgens Orthopaedics has partnered with the HURT! app to offer FREE virtual after-hours access to orthopedic specialists right when you need it.

Download the app to receive immediate guidance on your injury.