Kirkwood, MO

Kirkwood, MO

Our expert Kirkwood, MO 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 Kirkwood, MO

MCL Tear Treatment in Kirkwood, MO. Suffering from an MCL tear can be both painful and concerning, affecting your everyday activities and ability to do the things you love most. At Axes Physical Therapy, we recognize the difficulties you encounter and are dedicated to delivering the support and specialized care required to heal completely from your MCL injury in Kirkwood, MO. Our committed group of proficient Kirkwood, MO physical therapists focuses on creating customized treatment strategies tailored to your unique injury, goals, and the lifestyle you want to return to. With our holistic approach and modern facilities, we guide you through every step of your recovery journey. Contact us online, schedule an appointment, or reach out to the nearest Axes location and let us assist you in returning to the activities you love.

Anatomy of an MCL Tear

The knee is a complex joint consisting of bones, cartilage, muscles, and ligaments (connecting 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, joining the femur (thighbone) to the tibia (shinbone). The MCL plays a crucial role in stabilizing the knee, particularly against forces that push the knee inward. An MCL tear happens when the ligament is overstretched or torn, frequently caused by sports injuries, direct blows, or abrupt twisting motions.

Functions of the MCL in Knee Stability

The MCL provides essential support to the knee by:

An MCL tear may impair these functions, leading to pain, instability, and difficulty with movement.

MCL Tear Treatment & Rehab in Kirkwood, MO | Physical Therapy for Knee Injuries Near Kirkwood

Grades of MCL Tears

MCL tears are classified 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 involve mild inner knee pain and tenderness, with negligible swelling
  • Stability is usually preserved, enabling normal movement despite some discomfort

Grade 2 MCL Tear: Moderate Tear

  • A partial MCL tear, leading to more significant pain and swelling
  • Noticeable tenderness, moderate swelling, and knee instability are common symptoms
  • More limited movement, making walking or weight-bearing on the knee difficult

Grade 3 MCL Tear: Severe Tear

  • A complete rupture of the MCL, resulting in severe pain and instability
  • Symptoms include severe pain, considerable swelling, and a pronounced sense of knee instability
  • The knee may feel wobbly or give out, making walking difficult without assistance

Causes of an MCL Tear

Medial Collateral Ligament (MCL) tears can occur due to various causes, including:

  • Direct Impact or Trauma:
    • Contact Sports: Football, soccer, and hockey players in Kirkwood, MO often experience direct blows to the outer knee, resulting in the inner knee being overstretched or torn.
    • Accidents: Motor vehicle collisions or falls impacting the knee directly may cause MCL tears.
  • Twisting Movements: Sports involving sudden pivoting or twisting, like basketball or skiing, can strain the MCL. Landing awkwardly from a jump can twist the knee, causing MCL damage.
  • Overuse or Repeated Stress: Repeated stress activities on the knee, such as long-distance running, may gradually weaken the MCL, increasing tear risk.
  • Poor Conditioning or Muscle Imbalance: Insufficient knee muscle strength may heighten the risk of MCL tears due to overcompensation by the ligament. Imbalances between the quadriceps and hamstrings can destabilize the knee, putting additional strain on the MCL.
  • Inadequate Warm-Up or Flexibility: Failing to perform warm-up exercises prior to physical activity makes the MCL less prepared for sudden movements. Inflexible knee muscles heighten the chance of MCL overstretching during physical activities.
  • Previous Knee Injuries: Earlier knee injuries, including past MCL tears, can weaken the ligament and make it more prone to tearing.
  • Age-Related Factors: As people age, the ligaments can lose some of their elasticity and strength, raising tear risk.

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 can be recognized through specific symptoms. These symptoms differ depending on the grade of the tear. Usual indicators of an MCL tear include:

  • Pain: Pain is typically localized on the inner side of the knee. The pain can range from mild to severe depending on the grade of the tear.
  • Swelling: Swelling can develop around the inner knee shortly after the injury. Swelling may increase over the first 24 hours following the injury.
  • Tenderness: The inner side of the knee can be tender when touched.
  • Stiffness: Stiffness in the knee joint, causing difficulty in fully extending or bending the knee. The knee often feels tight or rigid.
  • Instability: A sensation that the knee is unstable or might give out when walking or bearing weight. The knee may feel wobbly or less stable than usual.
  • Bruising: Bruising can develop on the inner knee, sometimes spreading down the leg.
  • Difficulty Walking: Difficulty walking or a visible limp from pain and instability. Avoiding putting weight on the affected leg due to discomfort.
  • Locking or Catching: In some cases, the knee may lock or catch during movement.

Diagnosing an MCL Tear in Kirkwood, MO

Diagnosing an MCL tear often includes a physical exam and possibly MRI or X-ray imaging to confirm the extent of the injury. At Axes Physical Therapy, we offer free injury screenings in Kirkwood, MO. With Direct Access Physical Therapy, you are able to be evaluated and begin recovery without needing a physician’s referral.

Treatment Options in Kirkwood, MO 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: Applying knee braces for support and to avoid further injury during healing.

Surgical Treatments

Surgery is often necessary for severe MCL tears (Grade 3) or when accompanied by other ligament injuries, like 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 can include stitching the torn ends of the ligament back together or using a graft from another tendon to reconstruct the MCL.

Pre- and Post-Surgical Rehabilitation

Pre/post surgical rehabilitation plays a vital role in pre- and post-surgery recovery. At Axes Physical Therapy in Kirkwood, MO, we provide customized rehab programs to prepare your knee for surgery by enhancing strength and flexibility. Post-surgery, our Kirkwood, MO physical therapists partner with you to maximize recovery, concentrating on knee stability and functional restoration. This comprehensive approach makes sure you can get back to your everyday activities as promptly and safely as possible.

Kirkwood, MO Physical Therapy for MCL Tears

Physical therapy in Kirkwood, MO is essential for recovering from an MCL tear, focusing on restoring knee function, strength, and mobility. At Axes Physical Therapy in Kirkwood, MO, 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: Slowly enhancing flexibility and minimizing stiffness.
  • 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 is influenced by the injury’s extent and the chosen treatment strategy. 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:

  • Stick to your physical therapist’s guidance and exercise routine
  • Refrain from activities that could stress your knee too soon
  • Maintain a healthy diet to support healing

A comprehensive rehabilitation plan with Axes Physical Therapy ensures the best chance for a complete recovery and return to your favorite activities in Kirkwood, MO.

Call Axes For Your MCL Tear Treatment in Kirkwood, MO

If you suspect you’ve suffered an MCL tear, see Axes’ Kirkwood, MO 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 Kirkwood, MO physical therapists commit to offering customized MCL tear treatment that meets your specific needs, aiding in strength and mobility recovery. Don’t let an MCL tear sideline you longer than necessary. Reach out to Axes Physical Therapy in Kirkwood, MO today and start on the path to complete recovery. Contact us online, schedule an appointment, or call the Axes location nearest you.

Services Offered

Services Offered
  • Physical Therapy
  • Pre/Post Surgical Rehabilitation
  • Acute Injury Management
  • Chronic Injury Management
  • Work Conditioning/Hardening
  • Functional Capacity Evaluations
  • Sports Physical Therapy
  • Pediatric Orthopedic Physical Therapy
  • Geriatric Physical Therapy
  • Instrument Assisted Soft Tissue Mobilization
  • DorsaVi Video Motion Analysis
  • Vestibular Therapy and Post-Concussion Rehabilitation
  • Trigger Point Dry Needling
  • Free Injury Screenings
  • Kinesio Taping®
  • Blood Flow Restriction Therapy

Locations

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