What happens if you wait too long to get ACL surgery?


How long is too long for ACL surgery?

A delay of more than six months increases the risk of further damage and degeneration of the involved knee.

Can you delay ACL surgery?

(Reuters Health) – For some people, delaying knee surgery after an ACL rupture and trying exercise therapy instead may produce better outcomes over the long term, researchers suggest.

How long after an ACL tear should you have surgery?

The time between an ACL injury and surgical reconstruction depends upon how quickly the person recovers, but is often at least two to four weeks from the date of injury.

What happens if you don’t get surgery on a torn ACL?

If nothing is done, the ACL injury may turn into chronic ACL deficiency. Your knee may become more and more unstable and may give out more often. The abnormal sliding within the knee also can hurt cartilage. It can trap and damage the menisci in the knee and can also lead to early osteoarthritis.

What happens if an ACL tear goes untreated?

If left untreated, a small ACL tear will increase in size, causing more pain and increasing the laxity in the knee. Without a properly functioning ACL, the other structures of the knee experience greater strain, which causes further injuries to tissues in the knee.

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How urgent is ACL surgery?

Can I delay surgery for an ACL tear? In general terms, reconstructive surgery is not urgent and can be delayed to fit around work and personal schedules. During this time, sport and change of direction activities should be avoided.

How serious is an ACL tear?

One of the most feared sports and work injuries is a tear of the anterior cruciate ligament (ACL), which has ended or derailed the careers of numerous high-profile athletes. A torn ACL is very painful and can debilitate a person for several months and perhaps for life, although recovery for some is possible.

Can you make a torn ACL worse?

A worse injury

If you continue to use your knee after an ACL injury, you only make the problem worse. You fuel ongoing inflammation, the ligament continues to weaken, and a partial tear is likely to turn into a complete rupture. The ACL ligament takes a long time to heal even when you seek early treatment.

Is ACL recovery hard?

Recovery became more challenging as time went on, Navarro says. “You do feel like you can run and walk again. You do feel like your knee is strong,” she says. “But at the same time, the middle of the recovery is when it’s healing the most.

Is it bad to walk on a torn ACL before surgery?

If it’s a mild injury, your healthcare provider might clear you to walk on it without assistive devices, such as crutches, a brace or cane, following rehabilitative therapy. If you’ve experienced a severe injury, you’ll most likely need surgical repair followed by PT.

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How do you know when you need ACL surgery?

Key points to remember

You might think about surgery if: Your ACL is completely torn or partially torn and unstable. You are very active in sports or have a job that requires knee strength and stability (such as construction work). You have long-lasting (chronic) ACL deficiency that affects your quality of life.