Collateral Ligaments and other non-cruciate tendons & ligaments around the knee :
Grade 3 MCL and Medial Meniscus tear - - Posted by nj_whit (nj_whit), 24 April 2003
4 weeks ago I ruptured my MCL and Medial cartilage in a tackle during a football match. I went to A&E and was given a leg brace and told that the ligament would take 6-8 weeks to heal.
I am also on a 10-week waiting list for an MRI and a 12-week waiting list for physiotherapy. Is there anything I could be doing in the meantime to ensure that I recover as quickly and completely as possible?
Also, Is it correct that the meniscus injury could be more of a problem than the MCL? The orthopaedic consultant said there may be a need for an arthroscopy if the meniscus injury doesn't respond well when I return to sport after the 6-8 week period.
I look forward to any response.
Posted by cm (cm), 24 April 2003
Typically a meniscus injury is only going to cause a problem if it causes locking or instability (which would probably cause a good amount of pain as well and can cause continued degeneration of the knee because of bits that are out of place that are likely to continue to cause damage with weighted movement.) If there is a problem like that, it is typically repaired or removed through arthroscopic surgery. If they can repair the meniscus tear, you would be looking at 6 weeks or so non-weight bearing to allow it to heal. If it cannot be repaired and they just remove the damaged portion you start rehab immediately and barring complications could be back to full activity in 5-6 weeks or so.
Sorry, but I don't have any experience with MCL injury so I don't know what type of physical therapy you do for that.
Hope you heal up soon!
Posted by ATsoccergirl (ATsoccergirl), 24 April 2003
You need to start physical therapy ASAP. Any delay can affect the final stability of the ligament. The key with MCL injuries is to enhance the natural healing process, and allow the ligament to scar down to the proper tension.
See if you can find a strenthening program for an ACL reconstruction, they are extremely similar. You should start with Straight leg raises and ROM exercises. Once you have enough ROM, you should start biking, start with 10 min and work up to 30 minutes at a time. Biking really encourages the MCL to scar down.
Posted by Netty (Netty), 14 May 2003
An MCL can heal but a meniscus (cartlidge) cant.
If you keep the joint immobilised for a while it might heal but if the cartlidge is torn, immobilisation won't help at all.
I injured my MCL months ago and even though I can function, I still have some pain in the MCL area.
Its taken me over 3 years and 3 operations, but I can play my sports again, not as good but Im in there playing. Netty
Posted by bec (bec), 24 March 2004
I don't have a grade (not been given one) and am weight bearing so this info may not be of use - however the best thing for these injuries is to maintain as much strength as possible in the quads and hamstrings.... so bike riding, step machine, cross trainer are good (even taking the stairs instead of the lift) or squats with feet shoulder width apart and flat on the floor, straight back - bottom kept tucked in, and just do these in a controlled way until the muscles ache - although whatever you do if you feel that you are in pain STOP!
Posted by Juice (Juice), 30 March 2004
I had an acl reconstruction and a bucket handle meniscal repair 4 weeks ago. I can maybe offer you a little advice with regards your meniscus. I firstly injured my acl and meniscus playing rugby, i did not get involved in any type of sporting activity for around 8 weeks as i was advised to rest. After 8 weeks, my knee felt fine(i was still awaiting an MRI to confirm injury). I informed my hockey captain that i was fit as i had been doing quad and calf strengthening exercises whilst resting, and was named in the first eleven to play on the saturday. I was so excited to be given the opportunity to play as sport is my life. The game commenced and i was running around with absolutly no problem until i tried to stop running and slow down. My knee just gave way underneath me and i fell to the ground. Cant really remember much else about what happened cause i passed out with the pain. My knee was pretty stable before the game. My OS had not identified an acl tear because of the amount of stability i had in my knee. So what started off as a small tear in my meniscus and a slight tear in my acl, became a bucket handle tear in my medial meniscus and a complete tear of my acl. The moral to my story is that patience is a virtue and i'd advise anyone to wait until a thorough investigation of the knee has been done, because what would have been a 3 month recovery period, im now 28 days into a 12month rest, recouperation and intense physiotherapy regime.
If you need any more advice then just post it back but hope all works out for you
Updated Thu Apr 29 2010