ACL tears are common, especially among younger athletes. However, despite their frequency, many patients remain unaware of the complications associated with the injury. Below, a Kenai, AK, orthopedic surgeon from the Surgery Center of Kenai discusses how to prevent long-term complications of an ACL tear.
One of the knee’s four main ligaments, the ACL connects the shin and thighbone. As such, inflammation caused by an ACL tear will often affect other areas of the knee, raising the likelihood of future complications.
The majority of ACL tear patients run a high risk of developing early-onset osteoarthritis, which is a condition that can occur even after undergoing ACL reconstruction surgery. Because ACL tears typically occur in younger individuals, associated osteoarthritis often develops earlier in life, leading to increased health care costs, lost wages, and higher rates of disability.
When it comes to osteoarthritis prevention, a proactive approach is essential. If you have suffered an ACL injury in the past, keep an eye out for associated symptoms. If you experience swelling or pain when engaging in physical activities, consulting with an orthopedic surgeon is advised to help avoid more serious complications in the future.
Research is underway to help minimize the risk of osteoarthritis in ACL tear patients by combatting inflammation immediately following the injury. Patients are encouraged to take part in early postoperative rehabilitation to help slow the development of osteoarthritis and restore motion and mobility. Such programs also work to prevent re-tearing by strengthening the musculature surrounding the knee.
If you require the aid of a seasoned orthopedic surgeon in Kenai, AK, the Surgery Center of Kenai is the place to call. From orthopedic surgery and anesthesiology to ear and nose surgery, you can depend on their community-focused medical clinic for the warm, professional, low-cost procedures you need to enjoy the quality of life you deserve. Contact the medical clinic online or call (907) 335-2580 to schedule your surgery appointment.