If you know anything about the anatomy of the knee, you probably know that there are some important ligaments that stabilize the joint. These ligaments are important for knee health and unfortunately, they are also some of the problem areas for the more commonly recognized knee injuries. For example, you have probably heard of the ACL, or anterior cruciate ligament, which is frequently torn in athletes who perform quick, lateral motions in the sports they play. Or, you may know someone who is looking for PCL injury treatment in Philadelphia. If you’ve heard of a case involving an MCL (medial collateral ligament) injury, you probably know it occurs when the outside of the knee is struck with impact great enough to stretch this ligament far enough for it to tear. The fourth stabilizing ligament of the knee is the LCL (lateral collateral ligament) and all four are equally essential parts of the knee joint.
Ligaments are tough, fibrous bands that stretch across the knee and keep the joint from excessive movement that could cause damage. When a knee is injured, patients seek out the best care in the area so they can recover quickly and get back to playing the sports they love and/or living an active, healthy lifestyle they once had. For those looking for PCL injury treatment in Philadelphia, Rothman Institute is the place to go. Home to some of the nation’s top knee doctors, the staff at Rothman boasts years of leading the orthopedic field in cutting edge research and pioneering efforts in new technologies and treatment options.
6 Facts About the PCL
1. What is it and what does it do? It is broader and stronger than the ACL and it serves the knee as the connector between the thigh bone and the shin bone.
2. How do injuries occur? PCL injuries often occur when the knee is hyperextended due to impact just below the knee cap.
3. The nature of PCL injuries: Studies show that there is only about a 2% incidence of isolated PCL tears. This means that in most cases where PCL injury treatment in Philadelphia is required, there is also another accompanying knee injury to either a bone, cartilage or another ligament.
4. Can injury occur outside of sports? Outside of the common arenas where PCL injuries often occur (football field, basketball games), patients can also sustain this injury in car accidents when the knee hits the dashboard with significant force.
5. Some good news: When the PCL is injured in isolation, it can usually be successfully treated nonoperatively unlike ACL tears which are typically treated with surgery even when they occur in isolation.
6. How is the damage assessed? When a patient injures his/her PCL, an orthopedic knee specialist will evaluate the tear and assign a grade or level to the sprain. A third degree sprain means that the ligament has actually torn in two pieces. This level of severity often requires surgical reconstruction of the ligament in order for knee stability to be regained.