Glen Carbon, IL

Glen Carbon, IL

Our expert Glen Carbon, IL physical therapists provide customized treatment to aid your recovery from an MCL tear and help you get back to your favorite activities.

MCL Tear Rehab in Glen Carbon, IL

MCL Tear Treatment in Glen Carbon, IL. Dealing with an MCL tear may be painful and distressing, impacting your daily routines and favorite activities. At Axes Physical Therapy, we are aware of the struggles you endure and are dedicated to delivering the support and specialized care required to heal completely from your MCL injury in Glen Carbon, IL. Our expert team of skilled Glen Carbon, IL physical therapists is dedicated to formulating individualized treatment plans tailored to your unique injury, goals, and the lifestyle you want to return to. With our holistic approach and state-of-the-art facilities, we support you throughout your recovery process. Contact us online, schedule an appointment, or call the Axes location nearest you and let us assist you in returning to the activities you love.

Anatomy of an MCL Tear

The knee is a complex joint made up of bones, cartilage, muscles, and ligaments (that link bone to bone), working in unison to ensure stability and mobility. Four primary ligaments reinforce the knee: the anterior cruciate ligament (ACL), posterior cruciate ligament (PCL), lateral collateral ligament (LCL), and medial collateral ligament (MCL).

The MCL is found on the inner side of the knee, connecting the femur (thighbone) to the tibia (shinbone). The MCL is essential for stabilizing the knee, especially against inward forces. An MCL tear happens when the ligament is overstretched or torn, often due to sports injuries, direct impacts, or sudden twisting movements.

Functions of the MCL in Knee Stability

The MCL offers vital knee support through:

An MCL tear may impair these functions, resulting in pain, instability, and movement issues.

MCL Tear Treatment & Rehab in Glen Carbon, IL | Physical Therapy for Knee Injuries Near Glen Carbon

Grades of MCL Tears

MCL tears are grouped into three grades based on the severity of the injury,:

Grade 1 MCL Tear: Mild Tear

  • Entails slight stretching with microscopic damage to the MCL
  • Symptoms include mild pain and tenderness on the inside of the knee, with little to no swelling
  • Knee remains stable, permitting normal movement with slight discomfort

Grade 2 MCL Tear: Moderate Tear

  • Involves a partial tear of the MCL, causing increased pain and swelling
  • Symptoms include noticeable tenderness, moderate swelling, and a sense of instability in the knee
  • More limited movement, making walking or weight-bearing on the knee difficult

Grade 3 MCL Tear: Severe Tear

  • Involves a total MCL rupture, leading to substantial pain and instability
  • Symptoms consist of severe pain, marked swelling, and a clear sense of knee instability
  • Knee may feel unstable or give out, complicating walking without support

Causes of an MCL Tear

Medial Collateral Ligament (MCL) tears may result from several factors, including:

  • Direct Impact or Trauma:
    • Contact Sports: Football, soccer, and hockey players in Glen Carbon, IL often experience direct blows to the outer knee, resulting in the inner knee being overstretched or torn.
    • Accidents: Car accidents or falls impacting the knee directly may cause MCL tears.
  • Twisting Movements: Activities like basketball or skiing that involve quick pivoting or twisting motions, are capable of straining the MCL. Landing awkwardly from a jump can twist the knee, causing MCL damage.
  • Overuse or Repeated Stress: Repetitive knee stress activities, like marathon running, can weaken the MCL over time, making it more susceptible to tears.
  • Poor Conditioning or Muscle Imbalance: Inadequate strength in the muscles around the knee may heighten the risk of MCL tears due to overcompensation by the ligament. Muscle imbalances between the quadriceps and hamstrings may destabilize the knee, adding strain to the MCL.
  • Inadequate Warm-Up or Flexibility: Skipping warm-up exercises before engaging in physical activity can leave the MCL less prepared to handle sudden movements. Tight muscles around the knee can increase the likelihood of overstretching the MCL during activity.
  • Previous Knee Injuries: Prior injuries to the knee, including previous MCL injuries, weaken the MCL, making it more susceptible to tears.
  • Age-Related Factors: As people age, the ligaments can lose some of their elasticity and strength, making tears more likely.

To prevent MCL tears, engage in proper conditioning, strength training, flexibility exercises, and use protective equipment during sports.

Symptoms of an MCL Tear

An MCL (Medial Collateral Ligament) tear is identifiable by certain symptoms. These symptoms can vary in severity depending on the extent of the tear. Common symptoms of an MCL tear include:

  • Pain: Pain usually occurs on the inner side of the knee. The pain can range from mild to severe depending on the grade of the tear.
  • Swelling: Swelling around the inner part of the knee may develop soon after the injury. Swelling often intensifies in the first 24 hours after the injury.
  • Tenderness: The inner side of the knee is often tender to touch.
  • Stiffness: Stiffness in the knee joint, causing difficulty in fully extending or bending the knee. The knee may feel tight or rigid.
  • Instability: A sensation that the knee feels unstable or may give way when walking or bearing weight. The knee may feel wobbly or less stable than usual.
  • Bruising: Bruising may appear on the inner side of the knee, extending down the leg in some cases.
  • Difficulty Walking: Difficulty walking or a prominent limp because of pain and instability. Avoiding putting weight on the affected leg due to discomfort.
  • Locking or Catching: In some cases, the knee can lock or catch while moving.

Diagnosing an MCL Tear in Glen Carbon, IL

Diagnosing an MCL tear usually requires a physical exam and may involve imaging tests like MRI or X-ray to confirm the extent of the injury. At Axes Physical Therapy, we offer free injury screenings in Glen Carbon, IL. With Direct Access Physical Therapy, you can be assessed and start recovery without a referral from a doctor.

Treatment Options in Glen Carbon, IL for MCL Tears

Non-Surgical Treatments

  • RICE Method: Rest, Ice, Compression, and Elevation to reduce pain and swelling.
  • Physical Therapy: Tailored exercises to strengthen the knee, improve flexibility, and restore mobility.
  • Bracing: Using knee braces to provide support and prevent further injury during the healing process.

Surgical Treatments

Surgery may be needed for severe MCL tears (Grade 3) or if combined with other ligament injuries, such as ACL tears. Surgery may also be necessary if conservative treatments fail to improve knee stability and function after a significant period.

The MCL tear surgical procedure usually includes repairing or reconstructing the torn MCL to regain knee stability and function. This could involve suturing the torn ligament ends or using a tendon graft for MCL reconstruction.

Pre- and Post-Surgical Rehabilitation

Pre/post surgical rehabilitation is crucial for recovery both before and after surgery. At Axes Physical Therapy in Glen Carbon, IL, we create individualized rehab plans to ready your knee for surgery by boosting strength and flexibility. Post-surgery, our Glen Carbon, IL physical therapists partner with you to maximize recovery, concentrating on knee stability and functional restoration. This comprehensive approach ensures you can return to your normal activities as quickly and safely as possible.

Glen Carbon, IL Physical Therapy for MCL Tears

Physical therapy in Glen Carbon, IL plays a pivotal role in the recovery from an MCL tear, aiming to restore knee function, strength, and mobility. At Axes Physical Therapy in Glen Carbon, IL, our approach includes:

  • Initial Assessment: Examining the injury and formulating a personalized treatment strategy.
  • Strengthening Exercises: Strengthening the muscles around the knee for better stability and support.
  • Range of Motion Exercises: Increasing flexibility and decreasing stiffness over time.
  • Functional Training: Training specific movements and activities related to your lifestyle or sport.

Our therapists use a variety of techniques, such as manual therapy, therapeutic exercises, and modalities like ultrasound or electrical stimulation, to promote healing and expedite recovery. Each program is individualized to address your specific needs, ensuring you achieve the best possible outcome.

Recovery and Prognosis for MCL Tears

Recovery from an MCL tear depends on the injury’s severity and the treatment plan’s effectiveness. Here’s a typical recovery timeline and factors affecting it:

Typical Recovery Timeline:

  • Grade 1: A few days to a few weeks
  • Grade 2: Several weeks to a few months
  • Grade 3: A few months to six months, especially if surgery is involved

Factors Affecting Recovery:

  • Severity of the tear
  • Adherence to rehabilitation exercises
  • Overall health and fitness level

Tips for a Successful Recovery:

  • Adhere to your physical therapist’s recommendations and exercise plan
  • Avoid activities that may strain your knee prematurely
  • Maintain a healthy diet to support healing

A comprehensive rehabilitation plan with Axes Physical Therapy provides the best opportunity for a full recovery and resumption of your beloved activities in Glen Carbon, IL.

Call Axes For Your MCL Tear Treatment in Glen Carbon, IL

If you suspect you’ve suffered an MCL tear, see Axes’ Glen Carbon, IL physical therapists for an evaluation and to commence your recovery process. At Axes Physical Therapy, we are aware of the challenges and frustrations knee injuries bring. Our experienced Glen Carbon, IL physical therapists are dedicated to providing personalized MCL tear care that addresses your unique needs, helping you regain strength and mobility. Don’t allow an MCL tear to keep you off your feet any longer than necessary. Reach out to Axes Physical Therapy in Glen Carbon, IL today and take the first step towards your full recovery. Contact us online, schedule an appointment, or call the Axes location nearest you.

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