Chesterfield, MO

Chesterfield, MO

Axes Physical Therapy will provide you with safe, effective, and evidence-backed physical therapy

MCL Injury | Chesterfield, MO Physical Therapy

MCL Injury in Chesterfield, MO. For many people who maintain an active lifestyle, it’s easy to fear the worst when you feel sudden pain on the inside of your knee: Did I injure my MCL? Is it significant? How long will it take to recover? Will my knee ever be the same again? At Axes Physical Therapy in Chesterfield, MO, all of our physical and occupational therapists are committed to positive patient experiences. While we can’t, we can help ensure you get back to feeling like yourself with safe, effective treatments. Physical therapy has proven to be a fundamental part of recovering from any MCL injury. Our physical therapists in Chesterfield, MO specialize helping a variety of injuries and conditions in the musculoskeletal system heal. For treatment plans you know will be effective, call the Axes location most convenient for you you or contact us online.

What is the MCL?

MCL an acronym for “medial collateral ligament.” A ligament is a tough, flexible of connective tissue that attaches bone to bone and provides stability. The MCL connects your upper shin bone to the inner surface of the bottom thigh bone, running along your inner knee, and maintains stability in the inner knee. Its chief purpose is to resist valgus stress, or the knee being forced unnaturally inward. It combines with three other ligaments that work together to support normal function and stability:

  • ACL (anterior cruciate ligament), which runs down the center of your knee and controls rotation and prevents the knee from bending inward
  • PCL (posterior cruciate ligament), which forms an “X” with the ACL in the middle of the knee and prevents excessive posterior translation of the tibia relative to the femur
  • LCL (lateral collateral ligament), which connects the thigh bone to the fibula (the smaller bone in the lower leg) and helps keep the outer side of your knee joint stable

The knee is one of the largest joints we have. A healthy knee relies on surrounding bone and muscle, and the tendons and ligaments in order to provide stability and function properly. When any knee injury, such as an MCL tear, occurs it can limit or completely restrict your mobility and pursue the activities you love most, or just live a pain-free day-to-day life. Particular physical therapy techniques and other physician-prescribed treatment plans have been demonstrated through research and analysis to help those who have suffered an MCL injury mitigate pain and swelling and return to optimal movement health.

MCL Injury Chesterfield, MO | Sports Rehab | Injury Prevention | Physical Therapy Near Chesterfield

What Types of MCL Injuries Are There?

Generally speaking, an MCL injury either involves a sprain, wherein the MCL is stretched farther than is naturally, or a tear, where the ligament is either partially or completely torn or separated from the bone. MCL injuries are “graded” in three tiers:

  • Grade 1 — A grade 1 sprain or tear means that the ligament has been stretched, and less than 10% of the the fibers in your MCL are torn. It’s typically a mild injury, and don’t result in much instability. You will likely experience some tenderness and some soreness.
  • Grade 2 — This injury is when the MCL suffers more significant tearing, most commonly to the middle layer of the MCL. You will probably lose some stability in your knee, and the knee will likely be loose when moved by hand. Symptoms of a grade 2 MCL injury generally include much more noticeable pain.
  • Grade 3 — This injury is a complete tear to both the fibrous and deep parts. Your knee will be significantly unstable. Pain will be intense and you’ll likely feel several other symptoms. The injury may actually caused by or accompanied by other serious knee injuries such as ACL tears.

However significant your MCL injuries, our qualified Chesterfield, MO physical and occupational therapists at Axes can, as a team with your doctor, create an exhaustive plan specially made for you and your injuries to get you back to the things you love without incurring further injury.

How Do MCL Injuries Occur?

Ligament injuries account for 40% of all knee injuries, and the MCL is the most commonly injured ligament. MCL injuries occur due to the knee suddenly being forced too far inward. MCL injuries can also by the knee rotating more than the ligament can support. They can also take place when landing or excessive bending, such as if your foot stays in one place while the rest of your body moves.

Athletes in contact sports are the most likely to sustain an MCL injury. They can also occur in people who lift weights or lift heavy objects at their employment.

Common Symptoms of MCL Injuries

If you suffer an MCL injury in Chesterfield, MO, you’ll probably notice the pain right away. Other symptoms may include:

  • A sudden “pop” on the inside of your knee
  • Instability
  • Pain or discomfort when trying to bear weight
  • Contusions
  • Tenderness on the inside of your knee
  • Inflammation, either where the MCL is located or the whole knee

Sometimes you may feel like your knee is “shaky”, while other times you’ll barely be able to move the knee. If you suspect you may have suffered an MCL injury, stop any strenuous activity immediately and seek medical treatment for a diagnosis.

Diagnosis and Treatment of an MCL Injury in Chesterfield, MO

MCL injuries are diagnosed in a physical examination. In the examination, your Chesterfield, MO doctor or physical therapist will go over how the injury occurred, will feel for swelling and how your knee is different from your healthy knee, and gently see if your knee is unstanble while bending inward, and your pain level.

Most physical therapists or doctors that specialize in mobility of the human body in Chesterfield, MO will be able to determine if you have an MCL injury with the above procedures. A phsycian may also order the following imaging tests to check the severity of the injury and whether or not you have suffered other damage to the knee:

  • An MRI (magnetic resonance imaging), which uses a magnet and computer-generated radio waves to produce detailed images of the knee joint
  • An ultrasound, which uses sound waves and can help determine how severely the ligament is torn
  • An X-ray, which, while it won’t show the MCL or other ligaments, may be ordered for a severe MCL injury to ensure there are no broken bones

Alternatively, you can schedule and appointment with the Axes location nearest you for a free, no-risk injury screening. While we can determine if you have suffered an MCL sprain or tear, Missouri law mandates a prescription for further physical therapy.

Treating an MCL Injury in Chesterfield, MO

Typically, treating an MCL injury begins with basic first aid: swelling reduction, easing pain, and implementing the R.I.C.E. Method of Rest, Ice, Compression, and Elevation. For grade 1 injuries, the R.I.C.E method, over-the-counter pain relievers, and a few days or week or two of rest may be all you need for your body to heal itself.

Professional physical therapy is needed for grade 2 and 3 injuries to restore strength and optimal range of motion and get you back to racing down or around the court or field. You’ll also need to refrain from most physical until your knee is strong again. Your Axes physical therapist in Chesterfield, MO will be able to fit you for a knee brace in order to prevent your knee from moving side to side while your MCL is still healing. With physical therapy, you’ll still continue icing your knee and taking anti-inflammatory pain medication.

Surgery is typically only needed with severe grade 1 MCL injuries, or if the MCL tear is accompanied by an ACL tear or other damage to the joint. During the surgery, a surgeon will use a graft, either from your hamstring or from another person, to reattach the torn sections. The surgery is an outpatient procedure. If you do require surgery in Chesterfield, MO, our physical therapists will be able to help you with pre- and post-surgical rehabilitation get you the best possible results from your surgery.

How Can Physical Therapy in Chesterfield, MO Treat My MCL Injury?

The goal of physical therapy, when dealing with any injury, is to create safe and evidence-backed exercises, each aimed at helping a specific part of the body get back to optimal movement health. Physical therapy slowly and effectively improves strength in the surrounding muscles, flexibility of ligaments and tendons, and range of motion to the joint in the interest of not only recovery, but injury prevention. A physical therapist may recommend and implement the following practices:

At Axes Physical Therapy in Chesterfield, MO, all of our treatment plans are designed specifically for you, proven through peer-reviewed research, and created with the help of your doctor, in order to deliver you the best client experience and get you back to the activities you love.

Other services we offer in Chesterfield, MO include:

MCL Injury Chesterfield, MO | Athletic Training | Sports Training | Physical Therapy Near Chesterfield

Call an Axes Physical Therapist in Chesterfield, MO for Your MCL Injury

An MCL injury is scary and anxiety-inducing at first, especially if you’re an athlete or someone who finds joy in an active lifestyle, but with our help, the ailment is only temporary. We know our clients trust us with their recovery, so we repay that trust with safe and effective treatments that are backed by evidence. As part of our program, we’ll educate you on your injury and how the knee works so you can stay as healthy and active as possible. For meaningful and lasting recovery from your MCL injury in Chesterfield, MO, call the location nearest you and request an appointment online.

Services Offered

Services Offered
  • Physical Therapy
    • Pre/Post Surgical Rehabilitation
    • Acute Injury Management
    • Chronic Injury Management
  • Occupational Therapy
    • Certified Hand Therapy
  • Work Conditioning/Hardening
  • Functional Capacity Evaluations
  • Sports Physical Therapy
  • DorsaVi Video Motion Analysis
  • Pelvic Floor Therapy
  • Trigger Point Dry Needling
  • Pediatric Orthopedic Physical Therapy
  • Geriatric Orthopedic Physical Therapy
  • Instrument Assisted Soft Tissue Mobilization (IASTYM)
  • Spine Specialty – Manual Therapy Certified
  • Free Injury Screenings
  • Kinesio Taping®
  • Blood Flow Restriction Therapy

Our Team

Sara Crain
PT, CEAS, Astym Cert.
Rachel Weilandich
PT, DPT, CMPT
Brian Freund
Clinic Director, DPT, CMPT, TPS, MBA
Linda McCoy
Front Office

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Injuries and pain shouldn’t keep you from moving and doing the things you love.