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ACL Tear


Pediatric Orthopedics, Sports Medicine, & Scoliosis Specialist located in Sugar Land, TX & Katy, TX servicing the greater Houston, TX area

An anterior cruciate ligament (ACL) tear is a common knee injury, with about 100,000-200,000 reported ACL ruptures in the US each year. If you’re experiencing symptoms of an ACL tear, such as knee instability and swelling, you can expect innovative care at the OrthoHouston office. The Doctors provide up-to-date ACL injury treatments in Sugar Land, Texas, and Katy, Texas. We also welcome patients from Houston and surrounding areas. Find out more by booking an ACL evaluation through the website or by calling the clinic directly.

ACL Tear Q & A

What causes an ACL tear?

Your anterior cruciate ligament, better known as your ACL, is one of four primary ligaments in your knee. Located in the middle of your knee, your ACL is partially responsible for controlling back-and-forth motions and rotational movements of your knee. Your ACL’s most important job though is to prevent your tibia bone from slipping out in front of your femur. 

Since your ACL is always under excess pressure and added stress, especially if you’re an athlete, it’s prone to injury. Some of the most common causes of an ACL tear include:

Suddenly stopping or changing directions, which happens during tennis and basketball
Having a direct contact collision, possibly during football or soccer
Slowing down too quickly while running

Medical research shows that female athletes have higher incidences of ACL tears, likely because of differences in muscular strength and physical conditioning. 

Does an ACL tear cause symptoms?

An ACL tear can lead to a wide variety of signs and symptoms, none of which should be ignored or overlooked. You should schedule an ACL evaluation at the office if you notice:

  • Swelling or tenderness near your knee joint
  • Feeling like your knee is going to “give out”
  • Knee stiffness or limited range of motion
  • Popping noise or sensation 

The doctors offer on-site imaging, so they can often get to the root of your ACL injury on the spot and talk with you about treatment options. 

How is an ACL tear treated?

Your ACL tear treatment plan from the office may begin with conservative therapies if you have a minor or non-complex injury. Although a torn ACL won’t heal without surgery, conservative treatments are beneficial if you’re older or aren’t very active. the doctors could recommend:

  • Immobilization with a knee brace
  • Physical therapy to restore knee function
  • Crutches to prevent weight bearing on your knee

But if you’re an athlete or have a severe ACL tear, the Doctors are likely going to recommend surgery, which is typically performed arthroscopically. ACL surgery involves strategically rebuilding your ligament by grafting tissues from other areas of your body, like your patellar tendon, also located in your knee.

Once tissue grafts are in place, they serve as scaffolding in which new ACL tissue can grow and develop. Over time, and after months of dedication to physical therapy, your torn ACL continues to heal. Dr. Anderson finds that most ACL repair surgeries can allow you to get back to all of your regular activities, including sports and exercise, in as little as six to eight months. 

You can expect effective options for ACL tear management at the practice. Find out more by booking an ACL evaluation online or over the phone today.