Clover Bottom, MO

Clover Bottom, MO

Axes Physical Therapy can get you back to the activities you love most

MCL Injury | Clover Bottom, MO Physical Therapy

MCL Injury in Clover Bottom, MO. If someone plays sports or engages in other physical activity, feeling that sudden “pop” in their knee creates a lot of anxiety: Did I injure my MCL? Is it significant? How long will it take to recover? Will I ever be able to perform at the same level again? At Axes Physical Therapy in Clover Bottom, MO, we are driven by positive patient experiences. While we’d like to be able to make your MCL injury go away, we can make your recovery safe and effective through customized, evidence-based treatment plans. Physical therapy has been shown time and time again to be an essential aspect of any treatment plan for MCL injuries. Our physical therapists in Clover Bottom, MO specialize helping a variety of injuries and conditions in the musculoskeletal system heal. For treatment plans you know will be effective, reach out to the Axes location nearest you or request an appointment online.

The Anatomy of the MCL

MCL an acronym for “medial collateral ligament.” A ligament is like a strong, firmly attached rope that connects bone to bone and helps hold structures with the body together. The MCL runs from the inside of your upper shin bone to the inside of your bottoms thigh bone and helps keep your knee stable and moving normally. Its chief purpose is to withstand valgus pressure, or the knee being forced too far inward. It is one of four ligaments that help keep the knee stable, along with the:

  • ACL (anterior cruciate ligament), which goes through the middle of your knee and controls rotation and prevents the knee from bending inward
  • PCL (posterior cruciate ligament), which forms an “X” with the ACL inside the knee and keeps the tibia from sliding back too far
  • LCL (lateral collateral ligament), which affixes 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 known for being one of our most complex joints. Healthy structure and function depends on surrounding bone, muscle, tendons, and ligaments. When any knee injury, such as an MCL tear, occurs it can greatly affect your mobility and compete like you’re used to, or just live a pain-free day-to-day life. Specific physical therapy exercises and other physician-prescribed treatment plans have been demonstrated through research and studies to help patients mitigate pain and swelling and return to normal mobility.

MCL Injury Clover Bottom, MO | Sports Rehab | Injury Prevention | Physical Therapy Near Clover Bottom

What Types of MCL Injuries Are There?

For all intents and purposes, an MCL injury either involves a sprain, wherein the MCL extends beyond its normal limits, or a tear, where the MCL is either partially or completely torn or separated from the bone. There are three grades to MCL injuries:

  • Grade 1 — A grade 1 MCL injury refers to a sprain, or a tear where less than 10% of the MCL has been torn. It’s typically a mild injury, and your knee largely remains stable. Your knee will feel tender, and you may also experience soreness.
  • Grade 2 — This is more significant tearing, most commonly to the superficial part of the ligament. You will probably lose some stability in the joint, and the knee will likely be loose when manipulated manually. A grade 2 injury will result in significantly more pain than a grade 2 MCL injury.
  • Grade 3 — This injury is a complete tear to both the fibrous and deep parts. You will retain little to no stability. Pain will be intense and you’ll likely feel several other symptoms. Grade 3 MCL injuries often occur alongside other knee injuries such as ACL tears.

However significant your MCL injuries, the team of expert Clover Bottom, MO physical and occupational therapists at Axes can, alongside your doctor, develop an exhaustive plan specially made for you and your injuries to get you back to the things you love in a safe and effective manner.

What Causes MCL Injuries?

40% of all knee injuries involve damage to a ligament, and the MCL is the most commonly injured ligament. People often suffer and MCL injury because of 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 happen because of landing or excessive bending, such as if your foot stays in one place while your leg keeps moving.

MCL injuries are common in athletes in contact sports and in sports that require a lot of sudden movement such as football, soccer, skiing, basketball, and tennis. They can also occur in people who lift weights or lift heavy objects at their employment.

Common Symptoms of MCL Injuries

Most MCL injuries are accompanied by immediate, noticeable pain. Other symptoms may include:

  • A sudden “pop” on the inside of your knee
  • Instability
  • Not being able to put any weight on the knee
  • Contusions
  • Tenderness on the inside of your knee
  • Swelling, either of the MCL area or the entire knee joint

Sometimes your knee may feel like your knee is loose when you walk, even if walking doesn’t hurt, while other times the knee feels too rigid. Any time you feel pain or instability in your knee, do not participate in any more strenuous activity and seek medical treatment for a diagnosis.

Diagnosis and Treatment of an MCL Injury in Clover Bottom, MO

MCL injuries are diagnosed in a physical examination. The exam will usually start with a doctor or physical therapist in Clover Bottom, MO asking how the injury occurred. They’ll then bend your knee and apply slight pressure to the outside of it, noting how much pain you are in and whether or not your knee is unstable. They’ll also gently feel for swelling, and may compare your injured knee to the healthy one.

Most physical therapists or doctors that specialize in mobility of the human body in Clover Bottom, MO are qualified to determine if you have an MCL injury with a physical examination. Other tests to check severity or to confirm may include:

  • An MRI (magnetic resonance imaging), which uses a magnet and radio waves to produce detailed images of your soft tissue
  • An ultrasound, which uses sound waves and can help determine how severely the ligament is torn
  • An X-ray, which does not show soft tissue, 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 most convenient for you for a complimentary, no-obligation injury screening. While we can determine if you have suffered an MCL injury, Missouri law mandates a prescription for further physical therapy.

How to Treat and MCL Injury in Clover Bottom, MO

The initial treatment of an MCL injury consists of basic first aid: inflammation reduction, managing discomfort, and utilizing the R.I.C.E. Method of Rest, Ice, Compression, and Elevation. For sprains or slight tears, the R.I.C.E method, pain and swelling relievers, and some time with limited activity may be sufficient to get mostly back to normal.

More significant tears will require professional physical therapy in order truly recover from your MCL injury and get back to the activities you love. You’ll also need to refrain from strenuous until your knee is strong again. Your Axes physical therapist in Clover Bottom, MO can fit you for a knee brace in order to prevent your knee from becoming more instable while your MCL is still healing. With physical therapy, you’ll still continue icing your knee and taking anti-inflammatory pain medication.

Though rare, the most severe cases — in which the MCL is completely torn, the injury is accompanied by an ACL tear, or you are not recovering after several weeks of nonsurgical treatment — may require surgery. The surgery is performed by using a graft, either from your hamstring or from another person, to reattach the torn sections. You would be able to go home the day of the surgery. If you do require surgery in Clover Bottom, MO, our physical therapists specialize in pre- and post-surgical rehabilitation to make your surgery and recovery as successful as possible.

How Do Physical Therapists in Clover Bottom, MO Treat MCL Injuries?

The aim of physical therapy, when dealing with any injury, is to implement safe and evidence-backed treatments, each aimed at helping a specific part of the body get back to optimal movement health. These treatments and exercises will, over time, build strength in the surrounding muscles, flexibility of soft tissue, and range of motion to the knee in the interest of not only recovery, but injury prevention. Depending on you and your injuries, your treatment plan may include:

At Axes Physical Therapy in Clover Bottom, MO, all of our treatment plans are as unique as each patient, and created with the help of your physician, in order to deliver you the best client experience and get you back to the activities you love.

Other conditions we help treat in Clover Bottom, MO include:

MCL Injury Clover Bottom, MO | Athletic Training | Sports Training | Physical Therapy Near Clover Bottom

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

An MCL injury can be painful and frightening, especially if you’re an athlete or someone who finds joy in an active lifestyle, but there’s no reason it has to put you on the sideline forever. We know our clients trust us with their recovery, so the treatment method we plan for you will be safe and backed by evidence. As part of our program, we’ll educate you on your injury and the structures of the knee so you can stay as healthy and active as possible. For meaningful and lasting recovery from your MCL injury in Clover Bottom, 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
  • Certified Hand Therapy
  • Advanced Work Rehabilitation
  • Functional Capacity Evaluations
  • Sports Physical Therapy
  • Pediatric Orthopedic Physical Therapy
  • Geriatric Physical Therapy
  • Vestibular Therapy
  • Instrument Assisted Soft Tissue Mobilization
  • Spine Specialty – Certified Manual Therapy
  • Free Injury Screenings
  • Kinesio Taping®
  • Blood Flow Restriction Therapy (BFR)

Our Team

Stephen Brunjes
OTR/L, CEAS
Danielle O’Rando
Front Office
Sharon Titter
Clinic Director, MPT

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