Your medial collateral ligament (MCL) stabilizes the inner part of your knee and helps prevent the joint from overextending. When the outer side of your knee is struck, your MCL may tear partially or completely, forcing your leg to bend inward.
If you suspect an MCL injury, seek medical care from the skilled knee specialists at Midwest Orthopedic Specialty Hospital. We’ll help get your knee back in the best shape possible.
Signs of an MCL Tear
You may have torn your MCL if you experience these symptoms:
- A popping sound when someone or something collides with your knee
- Pain and swelling
- Inability to bear weight on the injured leg
At Midwest Orthopedic Specialty Hospital, your doctor will perform physical exams to help determine whether your injury involves a torn MCL. Your physician may request magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) to confirm a diagnosis, and order an X-ray to see if your injury includes a bone fracture.
Helping You Recover From an MCL Injury
In the first several days after your injury, apply ice to your knee and keep it elevated to reduce pain and swelling. Your doctor at Midwest Orthopedic Specialty Hospital might instruct you to use crutches to keep weight off your joint and ask you to wear a brace to stabilize your knee. As you recover from your injury, knee therapy and rehabilitation exercises will assist you in restoring the full use of your leg. You probably won’t need surgery to repair your torn MCL.
Depending on the severity of the tear, you may be able to return to your everyday activities – including sports – after one to eight weeks. Your knee specialist will advise you about gradually increasing your level of physical activity, so you stay as safe as possible during your recovery.