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Types of Knee Sprains

Published on June 10th, 2016

One of the most common injuries for athletes is a sprain, and more specifically, a knee sprain. Knee injuries in general are very common amongst athletes due to the amount of pressure placed on the knee during physical activity. This type of injury occurs when at least one ligament in the knee is stretched or torn, often because of sudden or direct impact or twisting of the ligament.

  1. Medial Collateral Ligament: You may have heard of the MCL, but maybe you didn’t know what it stood for. The MCL is a supporting ligament that can be found from the upper inside of the shin to the lower inside of the thigh. If the outside of the knee experiences excessive force, the MCL can easily tear. Athletes that should especially watch out for this injury include football and soccer players, and skiers.
  2. Anterior Cruciate Ligament: The ACL is a very common injury. The chances are, either you or someone you know has torn their ACL. They do not usually occur due to contact, an ACL injury is often due to twisting, jumping, or quickly stopping. Basketball, soccer, skiing, and football are all sports that see ACL injuries often.
  3. Posterior Cruciate Ligament: The PCL is a less common injury, but can be just as painful, especially since it is caused through direct impact, and is often paired with other knee injuries. This ligament helps connect the shin to the thigh, and occur most frequently amongst skiers and football, baseball, and soccer players.
  4. Lateral Collateral Ligament: Though fun to say the full injury, the LCL is a painful injury. It runs from the bottom of the thigh to the top of the lower leg and is a stabilizing ligament. Direct contact, twisting, and repetitive actions can be the culprit of this type of knee sprain. Sports that require fast directional changes, such as basketball, are more likely to see LCL injuries.

Knee sprains can be extremely minor to very severe. Depending on where the knee sprain ranks on severity, treatment varies immensely. The most extreme cases will require surgery. The key is early diagnosis. At Chicago Chiropractic and Sports Injury Centers, we can diagnose and likely treat any of the four knee sprains listed above. If you are experiencing knee pain, especially if you are an athlete, schedule an appointment today!

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Courtesy of: Sports Health


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