South County, MO

South County, MO

Our expert South County, MO physical therapists deliver tailored care to support your MCL tear recovery and get you back to doing what you love.

MCL Tear Treatment in South County, MO

MCL Tear Treatment in South County, MO. Dealing with an MCL tear may be painful and distressing, affecting your everyday activities and ability to do the things you love most. At Axes Physical Therapy, we are aware of the struggles you endure and are committed to offering the guidance and expertise necessary to achieve full recovery from your MCL tear in South County, MO. Our dedicated team of experienced South County, MO physical therapists focuses on creating customized treatment strategies specifically designed for your unique injury, aspirations, and desired lifestyle. With our comprehensive 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 support you in getting back to your favorite activities.

Anatomy of an MCL Tear

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

The MCL sits on the inner part of the knee, linking 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, frequently caused by sports injuries, direct blows, or abrupt twisting motions.

Functions of the MCL in Knee Stability

The MCL is crucial for knee stability by:

An MCL tear can compromise these functions, causing pain, instability, and challenges in movement.

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

Grades of MCL Tears

MCL tears are grouped into three gradeseach based on a different level of severity:

Grade 1 MCL Tear: Mild Tear

  • Consists of minimal stretching and tiny tears in the MCL fibers
  • Mild pain and tenderness on the inner knee, with minimal to no swelling, are symptoms
  • Knee remains stable, permitting normal movement with slight discomfort

Grade 2 MCL Tear: Moderate Tear

  • Characterized by a partial tear of the MCL, resulting in greater 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
  • Severe pain, significant swelling, and noticeable knee instability are symptoms
  • The knee may feel wobbly or give out, making walking difficult without assistance

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 South County, MO frequently sustain direct impacts to the outer knee, resulting in the inner knee being overstretched or torn.
    • Accidents: Motor vehicle collisions or falls with direct knee impact can cause MCL tears.
  • Twisting Movements: Sports that require rapid pivoting or twisting motions, such as basketball or skiing, can strain the MCL. Awkward landings from jumps may twist the knee, leading to MCL injury.
  • Overuse or Repeated Stress: Repeated stress activities on the knee, such as long-distance running, can weaken the MCL over time, making it more susceptible to tears.
  • 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 destabilize the knee, increasing MCL strain.
  • Inadequate Warm-Up or Flexibility: Failing to perform warm-up exercises prior to physical activity makes the MCL less prepared for sudden movements. Tight muscles around the knee can increase the likelihood of overstretching the MCL during activity.
  • Previous Knee Injuries: Previous knee injuries, particularly past MCL injuries, may weaken the MCL, increasing tear susceptibility.
  • Age-Related Factors: As people age, the ligaments can lose some of their elasticity and strength, increasing the risk of tears.

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 vary based on the severity of the tear. Typical symptoms of an MCL tear are:

  • 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 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, leading to challenges in fully extending or bending the knee. The knee can feel tight or stiff.
  • Instability: A sensation that the knee is unsteady or could give out while walking or weight-bearing. The knee often feels wobbly or less secure.
  • Bruising: Bruising often shows up on the inner knee, potentially extending down the leg.
  • Difficulty Walking: Difficulty walking or a noticeable limp due to pain and instability. Pain and instability cause avoidance of weight on the injured leg.
  • Locking or Catching: In some cases, the knee may lock or catch during movement.

Diagnosing an MCL Tear in South County, MO

Diagnosing an MCL tear typically involves a physical examination and may include imaging tests such as an MRI or X-ray to confirm the extent of the injury. At Axes Physical Therapy, we provide complimentary injury screenings in South County, MO. With Direct Access Physical Therapy, you can get evaluated and start your recovery without the need for a physician’s referral.

Treatment Options in South County, 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: Using knee braces to provide support and prevent further injury during the healing process.

Surgical Treatments

Surgery is usually required for severe MCL tears (Grade 3) or when the MCL tear is 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 may involve stitching the torn ligament ends together or using a graft from another tendon to reconstruct the MCL.

Pre- and Post-Surgical Rehabilitation

Pre/post surgical rehabilitation is essential for recovery before and after surgery. At Axes Physical Therapy in South County, MO, we provide customized rehab programs to prepare your knee for surgery by enhancing strength and flexibility. Post-surgery, our South County, MO physical therapists collaborate with you to optimize recovery, emphasizing knee stability and function restoration. This comprehensive approach guarantees you can resume your regular activities swiftly and securely.

South County, MO Physical Therapy for MCL Tears

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

  • Initial Assessment: Assessing the injury severity and creating a customized treatment plan.
  • Strengthening Exercises: Focusing on knee-surrounding muscles to improve stability and support.
  • Range of Motion Exercises: Gradually improving flexibility and reducing stiffness.
  • Functional Training: Focusing on movements and activities specific 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
  • Steer clear of activities that might overstrain your knee early on
  • Maintain a healthy diet to support healing

A comprehensive rehabilitation plan with Axes Physical Therapy will ensure you have the best chance for a full recovery and return to the activities you love in South County, MO.

Call Axes For Your MCL Tear Treatment in South County, MO

If you suspect you’ve suffered an MCL tear, come see Axes’ South County,MO physical therapists for an evaluation and to start on your path to recovery. At Axes Physical Therapy, we recognize the difficulties and frustrations associated with knee injuries. Our experienced South County, 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 South County, MO today and take the first step towards your full recovery. Contact us online, schedule an appointment, or reach out to your nearest Axes location.

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
  • Vestibular Therapy and Post-Concussion Rehabilitation
  • Pediatric Orthopedic Physical Therapy
  • Geriatric Physical Therapy
  • Instrument Assisted Soft Tissue Mobilization
  • Spine Specialty – Certified Manual Therapy
  • Trigger Point Dry Needling
  • Free Injury Screenings
  • Kinesio Taping®
  • Blood Flow Restriction Therapy
  • Certified Wellness Coaching

Our Team

Stephen Brunjes
OTR/L, CEAS
Brian Wahlig
Front Office Supervisor
Sarah Schroeder
MOTR/L, CHT, Astym Cert
Mandy Carter
MSPT, CMPT, ATC, CWC
Ray Bauer
Clinic Director, MSPT, CMPT

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