Treatment Goals of ACL Injuries and Tears
Although the orthopaedic surgeons at UPMC create treatment plans for each individual's symptoms, the overarching goals for treating all ACL injuries focus on:
- Restoring range of motion in the knee
- Stabilizing the knee
- Managing pain
- Reducing activity during initial phases of injury
Types of ACL Injury and Tear Treatments
Depending on your desired lifestyle, your doctor may choose a nonsurgical or surgical treatment method to maximize your potential for future mobility.
Nonsurgical treatments for ACL injuries often begin with protective bracing, followed by:
- A gradually implemented regimen of muscle-strengthening exercises for ACL injuries.
- Physical therapy for a full explanation and recommendations for ACL injury rehabilitation.
Additional nonsurgical treatment options include pain medicines, as well anti-inflammatories — such as ibuprofen — to help speed recovery of the ACL injury.
In cases where you may hope to maintain or foster physical activity, doctors may recommend ACL surgery and physical therapy.
Common surgeries for ACL tears and knee injuries can include:
- ACL repair or rebuilding
- ACL reconstruction
Benefits and Risks of ACL Injury Treatment
Treatments for ACL injuries can prove very effective in preserving knee function and mobility. For that reason, it's vital to report any suspicion of ACL injury to your doctor right away.
ACL injury recovery
Following any sort of surgical treatment of an ACL injury, you will have to eliminate all weight bearing activities for three to six months, depending on your ACL tear or injury symptoms and medical history.
Rest periods and breaks from weight bearing activities are especially important for those hoping to return to physical activities. Failure to follow doctors’ orders of rest can lead to further knee problems and related complications.
Learn more about treatments for ACL tears
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