Surgical treatment of cruciate ligament lesions

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The knee consists of the lower part of the thigh bone ( femur ), the upper part of the bone on the front of the leg ( tibia ), and a small round bone (the patella ) . During a shock or accident, one of the elements of your knee tore. It is a kind of elastic band, the anterior cruciate ligament , which participates, when in good condition, in the stability of the joint.That’s why you tend to fall. This injury also causes pain, swelling of the knee, weakening of the muscles of the thigh and, eventually, poor aging of the joint. Like your knee loose without warning, you can no longer practice certain sports or trades.
Your doctor offers surgery.


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The operation is practiced either by opening the joint ( open surgery ), or by introducing into the knee by small holes the surgical instruments and a cable ( fiber optic ) connected to a video camera ( arthroscopic technique ).

It usually lasts between 45 minutes and two hours.According to the case, either you only numb the knee ( logoregional anesthesia of the lower limb ), or the whole lower body ( peri-medullary anesthesia ), or you are completely asleep (The intervention It consists of replacing the torn ligament to stabilize the knee, using one of the attachments that connect the muscles to the bones (a tendon ) located near the joint, small pains can persist but usually they eventually disappear.

There is often a period of immobilization by a cast or splint.

For a good result, it is essential to participate in rehabilitation exercises.

In general you walk after a few days and quickly resume a moderate activity.

You start some sports after three to six months. However, for activities that pose a risk to the ligament (sports where the knee pivots like football), it takes six months to a year.

The knee is sometimes a little more limited in its movements than before. It’s rarely embarrassing.

Patients are usually very satisfied with the result, but caution is still recommended (especially in sports).

The chosen tendon varies according to the techniques. The surgeon cuts a portion of it that he uses to make a new ligament. He passes it in one or two tunnels dug in the bones of the knee, before fixing it with screws or staples.

You stay in hospital for only a few days.

If necessary, treatment limits the risk of formation of blood clots ( clots ) in the veins of the legs ( phlebitis ).

The pain is medically controlled and decreases rapidly, but it is normal for your knee to remain inflated for several weeks.

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