What is ACL Reconstruction Knee Surgery?
Knee ACL Reconstruction is a surgical procedure performed to replace the torn Anterior Cruciate Ligament (ACL) in the knee.
The ACL is one of the main ligaments of the knee, injury to the ACL can cause pain and dysfunction among other symptoms.
Individuals who play sports that require quick movements, jumping, sudden changes in direction, and abrupt stops are more likely to suffer from an ACL injury. These sports include:
- Basketball, Soccer, Gymnastics, and Skiing, etc.
A direct injury to the knee can also injure the ACL. Knee ACL Reconstruction is performed as an outpatient procedure. Patients can expect a complete recovery after eight to twelve months.
Who Needs Knee ACL Reconstruction?
A Knee ACL Reconstruction surgery is recommended to patients who have been diagnosed with a torn Anterior Cruciate Ligament (ACL). The ACL connects the femur (thigh bone) to the tibia (shin bone) to provide strength and rotational stability to the knee joint. An ACL tear affects the movement of the knee joint, restricting mobility and inflicting pain.
An ACL tear can be treated with medication and physical therapy; however, ACL Knee Reconstruction Surgery is a more effective treatment option for athletes and individuals who have an active lifestyle.
Along with these considerations, Knee ACL Reconstruction Surgery is recommended under the following conditions:
- The patient is an athlete who wants to go back to playing their sport.
- The patient has an active lifestyle.
- The injury to the knee has compromised the stability of the knee, causing it to buckle even during everyday activities.
- More than one ligament in the knee has been injured.
How is Knee ACL Reconstruction Performed?
Prior to the Knee ACL Reconstruction Surgery, the orthopedic surgeon makes a few important decisions after consulting with the patient. These decisions include:
The Choice of Anesthesia
The orthopedic surgeon, anesthesiologist, and the patient decide which type of anesthesia will be administered during the ACL knee reconstruction surgery. The surgeon and anesthesiologist will make recommendations to the patient, but ultimately, the choice will depend on the patient. Commonly, spinal or epidural anesthetic blocks are used to numb the knee and adjoining area.
The Choice of Graft
In ACL knee reconstruction surgery, a tendon graft is substituted in place of the torn ACL. The orthopedic surgeon can harvest the tendon graft from multiple sources, some of which include:
- Autograft, a tendon graft from the patient’s body, is obtained from the patellar, hamstring, or quadriceps tendons. Allograft, a tendon graft from a cadaver, is obtained from the patellar tendon, Achilles tendon, semitendinosus, Gracilis, or posterior tibialis tendon.
ACL Knee Reconstruction Surgery
Once the choice of anesthesia and graft is completed, the patient is prepared for an ACL Knee Reconstruction. There are two types of ACL surgery; open surgery and arthroscopic surgery for ACL Reconstruction.
In an open surgical procedure, the incision is bigger, and the recovery time is longer. On the other hand, an arthroscopic surgery promises a faster recovery time.
A patient can expect the following steps from an arthroscopic ACL Reconstruction Surgery:
- The anesthesiologist will administer the selected anesthesia to the patient If an allograft (tendon from a cadaver) is being used, then it will be harvested and placed on ice If autograft (tendon from the patient) is to be used, then the tendon is harvested from the patient through an arthroscopic procedure. The surgeon prepares the graft according to size, the surgeon makes two small incisions, 1 centimeter in diameter, on the front of the knee.
- An arthroscope is inserted through one incision to inspect the inside of the joint Minuscule instruments are inserted through the other incision. The surgeon repairs meniscus injuries, trims the cartilage, and then removes the torn ACL.
- The surgeon then drills holes in the femur and the tibia. The harvested tendon graft is threaded through the holes and secured with interference screws, staples, posts, or spiked washers. After the tendon has been secured in place, the surgeon will test the graft to examine its position and tension. If the graft is successfully placed, the surgeon will remove the instruments and the arthroscope.
- The incisions will be closed with sutures and bandaged.
ACL Reconstruction Recovery
Get Successful Knee ACL Reconstruction in NJ
If you or a loved one have torn their ACL and need a reliable medical center for ACL Reconstruction, then look no further then Complete Medical Wellness Center (CMW) in New Jersey.
CMW is a state-of-the-art medical facility equipped with the latest modalities in orthopedic surgery. Our board-certified orthopedic surgeons will deliver the best possible surgical outcomes for your complete recovery.
At CMW, you will receive the best surgical treatment, attentive patient care, and empathetic post-op care. You can expect the best at CMW!
Don’t delay your treatment, Call CMW today to schedule a Knee ACL Reconstruction surgery.
Schedule an online consultation with our orthopedic specialist and avail effective, reliable, and best orthopedic treatments in NJ.
How Long Does Surgery Take for A Knee Reconstruction ACL Surgery?
- The ACL reconstruction procedure takes less than 120 minutes.
- It is performed as an outpatient procedure, which means that the patient can leave the hospital a few hours after the surgery.
When Can a Patient Expect Complete Recovery?
- The patient can expect complete recovery after eight to twelve months of surgery. The orthopedic surgeon will recommend focused physical therapy after the Knee ACL Reconstruction Surgery, which will help the patient in regaining movement of their knee joint.
- The surgeon will recommend patients to restrict knee movements for up to three weeks after surgery. After which, the patient can resume everyday activities along with light physical therapy.
- After four to six months, patients would have recovered 60% use of their knee joint. Focused physical therapy is prescribed afterward, which encourages complete recovery.
How Long to Wear Knee Immobilizer After ACL Reconstruction?
Some Orthopedic Surgeons may recommend a brace which immobilizes knee movement after the Knee ACL Reconstruction Surgery. A patient may wear it for three weeks, in order to limit movement and provide support to the knee joint.
How Successful is ACL Surgery?
- The ACL reconstruction surgery has a success rate of 80-90%.
- Approximately 100,000 ACL reconstruction surgeries are performed in the US yearly.