ACL Injury Physical Therapy Recovery Program

You no longer have to be an avid sports fan to hear about the ACL any more. At The Spine and Health Center of Montvale, we are seeing ACL injuries more than ever before, with age ranges from children of 12 years old to active adults of all ages.

The ACL is one of the four main ligaments of the knee, along with the Medial (inside) Collateral Ligament, Lateral (outside) Collateral Ligament, and Posterior Cruciate Ligament that connects and stabilizes the femur (thigh bone) to the tibia (big lower leg bone) and fibula (small lower leg bone). As a general rule, ligaments prevent or restrict motion to specific joints. The motions they restrict are determined from their origin and insertion.

  • Collateral Ligament
    • Collateral ligaments are outside ligaments, as seen below. These ligaments prevent valgus and varus (side to side) stresses to knee
  • Cruciate Ligament
    • Cruciate ligaments are found deep in the knee joint. The Anterior (front) cruciate ligament and Posterior (back) Cruciate Ligament cross in an ‘X” pattern to prevent front to back sheer stresses on knee joint.

The ACL, specifically, prevents anterior (or forward) translation, and internal rotation of the tibia on the femur. In other words, the ACL also prevents lateral rotation of the femur on the tibia.

How does the ACL play a role in my daily life?

Accelerating, decelerating, reacting, turning, twisting, and jumping, occur in almost every sport, and with these motions, our ligaments, along with muscles, prevent our joints from moving in unwanted or injury susceptible directions. However, when our muscles are broken down, our bodies are fatigued or malnourished, and our minds are not focused on the demanding task at hand, we put ourselves at risk for injury. These are not the only reasons why ACL tears occur, but the fact is that an estimated 70% of ACL tears are sustained through non-contact mechanisms; the remaining 30% result from direct contact. This means, that 70% of the time, we cannot blame the contact sport, or another person for causing us injury.

Here are some facts:

  • The majority of ACL injuries (70%) occur while playing agility sports, most often reported in basketball, soccer, skiing and football.
  • ACL tears are most prevalent in patients 15-45 years old.
  • Female-male ACL tear ratio has been reported to be as high as 9:1 by NCAA statistics.

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ACL Injury Physical Therapy at The Spine and Health Center of Montvale

If you have experienced an ACL tear or injury and decide to do physical therapy or your doctor recommends it, one of our physical therapists will perform an initial evaluation to determine the extent and cause of the problem as well as any limitations you may be experiencing. Once the evaluation is complete, if we determine that we can indeed help you, we will create a specific and unique treatment plan for you based on your injury and your goals. Our physical therapists go beyond the standard of care and offer exceptional care to all of our patients. Treatment may consist of some or all of the following modalities depending on the extent of the rotator cuff injury: heat/ice/electrical stimulation, soft tissue and deep tissue massage, strengthening exercises, stretching, ART (Active Release Techniques), and laser. The goal for physical therapy is to strengthen the muscles that support your knee to get you out of pain and reduce your risk of re-injuring your knee in the future.

Give us a call at 201-746-6577 or visit our office at 2 South Kinderkamack Road, 2nd Floor, Montvale, NJ 07645 to schedule your initial evaluation and find out how we can help you.

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