Defiance, MO

Defiance, MO

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

MCL Injury | Defiance, MO Physical Therapy

MCL Injury in Defiance, MO. For many people who maintain an active lifestyle, feeling that sudden “pop” in their knee creates a lot of anxiety: Did I suffer an MCL injury? 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 Defiance, MO, we are driven by getting our clients back to the activities they love most. 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 an integral component of any treatment plan for MCL injuries. Our physical therapists in Defiance, 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 most convenient for you you or contact us online.

How the MCL Works

MCL stands for “medial collateral ligament.” A ligament is a fibrous of connective tissue that affixes bones to each other and provides stability. 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 functioning normally. Its functions to guard against valgus stress, or the knee being forced too far inward. It combines with three other ligaments that work together to support normal function and stability:

  • ACL (anterior cruciate ligament), which goes through the middle of your knee and provides rotational stability and prevents the knee from bending inward
  • PCL (posterior cruciate ligament), which crosses the ACL inside the knee and the femur from sliding off the tibia
  • LCL (lateral collateral ligament), which runs along the outside of the knee from the thigh bone to the fibula (the smaller bone between the knee and ankle) 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 movement depends on surrounding bone, muscle, tendons, and ligaments. There are countless knee injuries that can limit or completely restrict your mobility and compete like you’re used to, or just get around the house pain-free. Specific physical therapy techniques and other physician-prescribed treatment plans have been demonstrated through evidence to help those who have suffered an MCL injury mitigate pain and swelling and get back to normal functionality.

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

What Types of MCL Injuries Are There?

For all intents and purposes, an MCL injury is either a sprain, wherein the MCL is stretched beyond its normal limits, or a tear, where the MCL is either partially or completely torn or separated from the bone. MCL injuries are “graded” in three levels:

  • Grade 1 — A grade 1 sprain or tear means that the ligament has been stretched, and less than 10% of the MCL has been torn. It’s typically a mild injury, and your knee will still be stable. Your knee will feel tender, and you may also experience mild pain.
  • Grade 2 — This is more significant tearing, generally to the more fibrous part of the MCL. You will probably lose some stability in the joint, and your joint may be loose when moved by hand. 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. You will likely feel intense pain and 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 licensed Defiance, MO physical and occupational therapists at Axes can, along with your doctor, implement an extensive plan uniquely made for you and your injuries to get you back to the activities your love most safely.

MCL Injuries: Causes and Symptoms

40% of all knee injuries involve damage to a ligament, and most of the time that ligament is the MCL. 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 stand. They can also happen because of landing or unnatural bending, such as if your foot stays in one place while you’re moving.

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

Common Symptoms of MCL Injuries

If you suffer an MCL injury in Defiance, MO, you’ll likely notice the pain right away. 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 on the inside of the knee or the entire knee joint

Sometimes your knee may feel like it’s wobbling when you walk, even if walking doesn’t hurt, while other times the knee feels too rigid. If you suspect you may have suffered an MCL injury, stop any strenuous activity immediately and seek medical treatment for a diagnosis.

Diagnosing and Treating an MCL Injury in Defiance, MO

MCL injuries are diagnosed in a physical examination. The examination will usually start with a doctor or physical therapist in Defiance, 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 with knowledge of movement health in Defiance, MO will be able to diagnose an MCL injury with a physical examination. 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 magnetic field and radio waves to produce detailed images of the inside of your knee
  • An ultrasound, which uses sound waves and can be helpful in checking the severity of your injury
  • An X-ray, which, while it won’t show the MCL or other ligaments, to insure your femur, kneecap, tibia, and fibula have not been broken

Axes Physical Therapy also offers injury screening injury screenings at no cost or obligation to you. While we can determine if you have suffered an MCL sprain or tear, Missouri law mandates that physical therapy be prescribed by a doctor.

How MCL Injuries are Treated in Defiance, MO

Typically, treating an MCL injury begins with basic first aid: reducing swelling, easing discomfort, and utilizing the R.I.C.E. Method of Rest, Ice, Compression, and Elevation. For mild injuries, the R.I.C.E method, over-the-counter pain relievers, and some time spent resting may be enough to get mostly back to normal.

Professional physical therapy is needed for more severe 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 Defiance, MO can fit you for a knee brace in order to prevent your knee from becoming more instable while your MCL is still healing. Even with physical therapy, you’ll likely still continue the R.I.C.E. method and anti-inflammatory medication.

Though uncommon, the worst grade 1 tears — 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 an organ donor, to reattach the torn sections. The surgery is an outpatient procedure. If you do require surgery in Defiance, MO, our physical therapists are experts at pre- and post-surgical rehabilitation, which ensures that your knee will be healthy enough for the ligament reconstruction, and you’ll build back strength safely after the surgery.

How Do Physical Therapists in Defiance, MO Treat MCL Injuries?

The goal of physical therapy, when dealing with any injury, is to create safe, effective, and evidence-backed treatment methods based on each patient as an individual. These treatments and exercises will, over time, build strength in the surrounding muscles, flexibility of soft tissue, and range of motion to the joint so you can get back to what you love most and prevent further injury. A physical therapist may recommend and implement the following practices:

At Axes Physical Therapy in Defiance, MO, all of our treatment plans are designed specifically for you, backed by empirical evidence, and created alongside your physician, in order to get you the best patient outcome possible and get you back to the activities you love.

Other injuries we help treat in Defiance, MO include:

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

Schedule an Appointment With an Axes Physical Therapist in Defiance, MO for Your MCL Injury

An MCL injury is scary and anxiety-inducing at first, especially if you’re an athlete, 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 Defiance, 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
  • Work Conditioning/Hardening
  • Functional Capacity Evaluations
  • Certified Hand Therapy
  • Sports Physical Therapy
  • Pediatric Orthopedic Physical Therapy
  • Geriatric Physical Therapy
  • Instrument Assisted Soft Tissue Mobilization
  • Vestibular Therapy and Post-Concussion Rehabilitation
  • Trigger Point Dry Needling
  • Free Injury Screenings
  • Kinesio Taping®
  • Blood Flow Restriction Therapy

Our Team

Sara Crain
PT, CEAS, Astym Cert.
Julie Freiner
OTR/L, CHT
Mitchell Hammack
PT, DPT, CMPT
Matt Williams
MS, OTR/L, ATC/L
Jennifer Szydlowski
Clinic Director, PT, CMPT
Kaysie Cope
Front Office
Lauren Vaughn
PT, DPT, CMPT, Astym Cert.

Locations

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