Who can diagnose MCL injury?

A doctor should be able to diagnose an MCL tear after a physical examination of the knee. A doctor may compare one knee with the other, look closely at the injured knee, and gently feel for any swelling and the location of the tenderness. A doctor might carry out further imaging tests to confirm the diagnosis.

How do you test for an MCL sprain?

An exam will include checking for pain or tenderness along the inside of the knee and checking the integrity of your MCL by exerting pressure on the outside of your knee while your leg is both bent and straight.

Can physical therapy help a torn MCL?

MCL injuries can reduce the stability and support of the knee, and even lead to pain and swelling. A physical therapist can help restore the full function of certain MCL injuries through specialised strengthening exercises.

What does a sprained MCL feel like?

Stiffness. Swelling. Tenderness along the inside of the knee. A feeling that the injured knee may give way under stress or may lock or catch.

What kind of doctor treats an MCL tear?

MCL injuries are diagnosed in a physical exam with your orthopedic physician. In the physical exam, your doctor will check the range of motion in your knee. Your provider will also take a full medical history to determine how the injury occurred, what your symptoms are and what movements make the symptoms more severe.

What does a grade 2 MCL sprain feel like?

Grade 2: A grade 2 MCL tear is a moderate tear in which your MCL is partially torn — usually the superficial part of your MCL. Your knee will likely be loose when it’s moved by hand, and you’ll probably have intense pain and tenderness along the inner side of your knee.

Is walking good for MCL sprain?

Many physical therapists and doctors recommend walking as an exercise to help relieve pain and stiffness after an MCL sprain, mainly if it is a grade II sprain. The MCL helps support the knee, and it is important to walk as soon as possible after the injury. Walking is beneficial in the healing process of MCL sprains.

How long does a Grade 1 MCL sprain take to heal?

A grade 1 (minor) MCL tear can take from a few days to a week and a half to heal enough for a return to normal activities, including sports. A grade 2 tear can take from two to four weeks to heal.

Should I wear a brace for a sprained MCL?

Most MCL injuries can be treated at home with rest, ice, and anti-inflammatory medicine. Your doctor may suggest that you use crutches and wear a brace that protects the knee but also allows for some movement.

What is a grade 1 MCL strain?

Grade I – A Grade 1 MCL injury indicates a mild sprain or stretching of the ligament fibers. A Grade 1 MCL sprain may cause mild to moderate pain and slight swelling, but the knee joint remains stable. Grade II – Grade II MCL injuries indicate a more severe sprain or stretching of the ligament.

Should I wear a knee brace for MCL injury?

Most patients with a grade I MCL tear will be able to return to sports within one or two weeks following their injury. For grade II injuries, you will most likely need to wear a hinged knee brace for a specified period of time.

What does a minor MCL tear feel like?

MCL injuries hurt. Most people feel pain along the inside edge of the knee, and they also have swelling. You might hear a pop when the damage to the knee takes place, and your knee may lurch to the side. You may find it hard to walk, or feel like you can’t put pressure on the leg with the hurt knee.

Where would you feel MCL pain?

Most people who tear their MCL feel pain and a “pop” in their knee when the injury happens. Their knee usually swells soon after the injury, most of the time around the inside part of the knee.

How long does a partial MCL tear take to heal?

Recovery Time for MCL Injuries by Grades Grade 1 is the least severe due to the MCL only being agitated, but no severe damage. So the MCL recovery time is around 1 to 2 weeks, due to the time for the inflammation and irritation to go away.

Is an MCL sprain a tear?

An MCL sprain or medial collateral knee ligament sprain is a tear of the ligament on the inside of the knee. It usually occurs suddenly from twisting or direct impact. However, it may develop gradually over time.

How do you treat a Grade 1 MCL sprain?

  1. Prompt return to weight-bearing.
  2. Activities to encourage full motion.
  3. Ice.
  4. Safe strengthening activities, such as biking, that avoid cutting and twisting.
  5. Optional anti-inflammatory medication for one week (e.g. Diclofenac/Voltaren or Ibuprofen/Advil)
  6. Bracing with a hinged brace to support the MCL.

Does a torn MCL hurt to the touch?

A torn MCL (medial collateral ligament or tibial collateral ligament) may be painful to the touch.

How do you treat a sprained MCL at home?

Most MCL injuries can be treated at home with rest, ice, and anti-inflammatory medicine. Your doctor may suggest that you use crutches and wear a brace that protects but allows for some movement of your knee. You may need to reduce your activity for a few weeks.

What can you not do with a sprained MCL?

Avoid using stair-stepper machines, doing deep knee bends and squats or any exercise that causes crunching, clicking or pain at the kneecap. Stand facing a table, using the table for balance and support. While standing on the unoperated limb bend the knee of the operated side and raise the heel toward the buttock.

Can you walk on a grade 2 MCL sprain?

If the MCL or ACL tears, the result is usually pain, swelling, stiffness, and instability. In most cases, the injured person can still walk with the torn knee ligament. But the movement will be severely limited, not to mention painful.

What is the fastest way to recover from an MCL injury?

The injury tends to heal on its own with rest over a period of a few weeks. You should do a few things right away to ensure that you heal quickly and completely: Immediately after the injury, you should apply ice to help with pain and relieve swelling. Elevate your knee over your heart using cushions.

How long does a stretched MCL take to heal?

MCL Tear or Sprain Nonsurgical Recovery Time It can take anywhere from a few days to 8 weeks for an MCL injury to heal and a person to return to normal activities and sports.

What stretches to do to strengthen MCL?

  1. Sit with your affected leg straight and supported on the floor or a firm bed. Place a small, rolled-up towel under your knee.
  2. Tighten the thigh muscles of your affected leg by pressing the back of your knee down into the towel.
  3. Hold for about 6 seconds, then rest for up to 10 seconds.
  4. Repeat 8 to 12 times.

Does an MCL tear ever fully heal?

Thus, a grade I acute MCL injury usually needs 1-2 weeks to heal, while a grade II injury takes 3-4 weeks to heal and a grade III isolated complete MCL injury typically takes 5-6 weeks of properly guided rehabilitation to have the injury heal completely.

Do I need an MRI for MCL tear?

Magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) is the investigation of choice to confirm injury to knee ligaments, including the MCL [1]. Although an MRI is not 100% sensitive for detecting MCL injuries [2], surgeons can rely on its findings for a diagnosis in grade 3 MCL tears.

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