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Ligament Tear

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Ligament Tear Treatment & Diagnostics in Alwarpet, Chennai

Ligament Tear 

The ligament is a tough band of fibrous tissues. It works as a connection between bones or between bones and cartilages. Although ligaments are usually very tough, sometimes they can be torn or stretched. This results in different types of sprains.

A ligament tear occurs because of extreme force exerted on the joints. For instance, a ligament can be torn if you fall from a height. Ligament tears are common in the knee, ankle, wrist, neck, thumb and back ligaments.

To seek treatment, you can consult an orthopedic doctor near you or you can visit an orthopedic hospital near you.

What are the types of ligament tears?

Usually, a ligament tear occurs during athletic activities. It is because the joints are under stress and consistently in action. The common types of ligament tears occur in:

  • Knee
    The four main ligaments in the knee are the anterior cruciate ligament (ACL), medial collateral ligament (MCL), posterior cruciate ligament (PCL) and lateral collateral ligament (LCL). The ACL is said to be more prone to injury. 
  • Ankle
    Ligament tears in the ankle are common for the lateral ligament complex. It includes the posterior talofibular (PTFL), calcaneofibular (CFL) and anterior talofibular (ATFL) ligaments. A high ankle sprain is more commonly seen in athletes. It involves the distal tibiofibular syndesmotic ligaments.
  • Wrist
    There are 20 ligaments in the wrist. Triangular fibrocartilage complex and scapholunate ligament usually get injured.
  • Neck
    Ligaments in the neck can get torn during a whiplash injury. It occurs when a sudden acceleration or deceleration causes an extreme movement of the cervical spine. Damage to bones, muscles and nerves during a whiplash injury may also occur.

What are the symptoms of a ligament tear?

  • Pain and tenderness
  • Bruising and swelling
  • Difficulty in moving the joint
  • Muscle spasms
  • Impaired movement

Although not a common symptom, you may even feel the tear or hear a pop sound at the time of injury.

When do you need to see a doctor?

If you experience the symptoms mentioned above, immediately consult a doctor.

Request an appointment at Apollo Spectra Hospitals, Alwarpet, Chennai.

Call 1860 500 2244 to book an appointment.

What causes a ligament tear?

Ligaments get torn when they are stretched out or encounter trauma or impact. The common causes of a ligament tear are hard or awkward landings or twisting of body parts. The ankle and knee ligaments are at a high risk of tearing because these joints are weight-bearing ligaments that are often under stress.

People who engage in sports activities that involve contact (such as football) are at a risk of ligament injuries.

An ankle sprain or a mild tear in ankle ligaments can occur when you walk or run awkwardly or twist your ankle. 

How is a ligament tear treated?

Depending on your symptoms, severity and location of a ligament tear, your doctor may recommend a viable treatment option. If you develop a mild ligament tear, the doctor may prescribe over-the-counter medications for pain and swelling. 

In the case of a grade 2 sprain, the doctor may recommend bracing to help heal the partial ligament tear. The duration of the brace may be determined by the location and severity of your ligament injury. In the case of a grade 3 sprain, the doctor may prescribe surgery to help repair the torn ligament.

Once the swelling and pain subside, the doctor may prescribe home exercises or physical therapy to restore the functions of the joint and ligament. 

Conclusion

Although some ligament tears may seem relatively minor, you should not take them lightly. Seek medical assistance if your symptoms do not subside within 72 hours. An early diagnosis and proper treatment can help avoid severe complications in the future.

Can an X-ray show a ligament tear?

Injuries to the soft tissues such as ligaments and tendons cannot be detected in an X-ray report. However, your doctor may do an X-ray to rule out bone fractures.

How long does a ligament tear take to heal?

The recovery time may vary depending on the severity of a ligament tear. Some might take about six weeks, whereas others might take more than a year to heal completely.

Can a ligament tear heal on its own?

While a torn ligament may heal naturally over a period, it is best to seek medical advice to make sure that the affected areas heal correctly.

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