The Collateral Ligaments are less commonly injured than the ACL. There are two collateral ligaments- the Medial Collateral (MCL), found on the inside surface of the knee, and the Lateral Collateral, on the outside surface of the knee.
The MCL is injured more frequently than the LCL, and quite often injuries to the LCL are associated with injuries to other structures of the knee.
Most collateral ligament injuries occur as a result of a direct contact with the knee, with force directed towards the injured side- for example, a blow to the outside of the knee will force the knee inwards, towards the opposite side and cause stretching of the MCL.
X-rays may help rule out associated bony injuries, and an MRI is usually performed to help assess the soft tissues and extent of the injury.
Isolated LCL injuries, and MCL injuries rarely require surgery, regardless of the level of injury, except in certain circumstances. LCL injuries can be associated with other injuries that can severely affect the stability of the knee. These injuries can be frequently missed, which is why it is important to see a doctor who understands these injuries and when they need specialist intervention, as well as understanding the injury rehabilitation process.
For comprehensive knee ligament injury rehabilitation, diagnosis & management contact us at The Crossbones Clinic Newcastle.