Athletic Advantage: MCL Injuries

Published 09/18 2013 10:46PM

Updated 09/18 2013 10:58PM

        In simple terms, the medial collateral ligament connects the thigh bone to the shin bone on the side of the knee.In this weeks Athletic Advantage, Tobin McDuff and photographer Jake Van Donge catch up with athletic trainer Jeremy Woodward to learn more about the MCL. 

Jeremy Woodward on the MCL:
        "So the mechanism or cause of the injury typically is a twisting and a shearing. So you have that cartilage and that meniscus acts as a shock absorber between the thigh bone and the shin bone. So the knee has the ability to bend and a little bit of ability to move this way. If you exceed normal limits and grind and shear that meniscus together you can take a chunk of the meniscus and a meniscus injury requires surgery for it to be fixed. They can do one of two things. They can repair a tear down in the meniscus that's shaped like a bucket handle so it flaps up and flaps down. It causes alot of pain and is very debilitating. You're looking at about two weeks before they can return to play. If there's a tear on the outer part of the meniscus, most of the time they'll just go in and trim that up with arthroscopic surgery. You're non-weight bearing on crutches for six weeks. If we suspect a meniscus injury prior to them getting into a physician or doctor, we put them on crutches so they're not walking around and re-creating that mechanism to further injure it or make matters worse.

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