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Multi-ligamentous Knee Reconstruction
Dr. James Chen, M.D. - In San Francisco, CA

An arthroscopic-assisted surgical procedure performed to replace or repair two or more torn ligaments in the knee. The surgery consists of an ACL and/or PCL reconstruction as well as a medial or lateral collateral ligament repair or reconstruction. The combination of necessary procedures will depend on which ligaments are injured.

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Common Questions about Multi-Ligament Knee Reconstruction

What is multi-ligamentous knee injury?

An injury to two or more ligaments in the knee is a multi-ligamentous knee injury. Typically it involves a cruciate ligament (ACL or PCL) and a collateral ligament (MCL or LCL). Multi-ligamentous knee injuries arise from high energy trauma such as motor vehicle or motorcycle injuries or in the setting of a knee dislocation. A multi-ligamentous knee is an unstable knee and must be treated appropriately to restore functional knee stability.

What is multi-ligamentous knee reconstruction?

Multi-ligamentous knee reconstruction is when multiple ligaments in the knee are replaced with autograft or cadaver allograft tissue.

How is multi-ligamentous knee reconstruction performed?

When two or more ligaments are torn and require surgery, the guiding principle is to address the collateral ligaments (MCL and LCL) first and then later address the cruciate ligaments (ACL or PCL). The MCL or LCL should be operated on or allowed to heal first prior to an ACL or PCL reconstruction 4 to 6 weeks later. In some circumstances, surgical repair or reconstruction can be performed on all of the ligaments at the same surgery. However, this depends on the exact severity of the injuries.

What is the recovery after multi-ligamentous knee surgery?

A patient will need to wear a hinged knee brace for 6 weeks followed by several months of physical therapy. Full recovery after a multi-ligamentous knee injury takes 8 to 10 months.

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