A cruciate ligament is a large ligament right in the middle of the knee. There are two of them - anterior (ACL) and posterior (PCL).

cruciate ligaments cruciate ligaments - bones distracted  
The word 'cruciate' means 'crossed', referring to the fact that the two cruciate ligaments cross over one another in the centre of the joint. Here the bones are distracted so that you can see the attachments of both anterior and posterior cruciate ligament.  


What do the cruciate ligaments do?

These ligaments are very important structures, connecting the thighbone (femur) and the shinbone (tibia) and stabilising the joint from frontwards and backwards forces.

Crucial ligament

The cruciate ligaments

Illustrated overview of the position and function of the cruciate ligaments.

Cruciate Ligament Library

Library of excerpts from the medical literature about Cruciate Ligaments, with links to PubMed

What do the cruciate ligaments do?

The two cruciate ligaments work in tandem to stabilise the knee.


Biomechanics of the anterior cruciate ligament: Physiology, rupture and reconstruction techniques Domnick C, Raschke MJ and Herbort M. World J Orthop. 2016 Feb 18; 7(2): 82–93.

See also -

eBook about ACL repair in children

ACL Repair in Children - ebook