Reconstructing a torn ACL is very important, as the ACL (anterior cruciate ligament) is responsible for the stable and regular functioning of the knee. Delaying your ACL surgery and leaving the torn ACL untreated can lead to several consequences. This blog will focus on the disadvantages of delaying ACL surgery and how it can further complicate the conditions for you and worsen your condition.
Complications of Delaying your ACL Surgery
Once torn, the ACL will not heal on its own. Surgical reconstruction is necessary if you want to enjoy maximum knee motion and stability. Some patients take the bad choice of delaying their ACL surgery but little do they know about the risks they are putting themselves in. An untreated torn ACL can further lead to more complications, including-
If the torn ACL is left untreated, scar tissue is formed, which may lead to a stiff joint. Joint stiffness can limit the range of motion. It is a common consequence of delaying or avoiding reconstruction surgery of a torn.
Pain with walking-
An individual with a torn ACL is likely to experience pain in the knee and may face difficulty in walking. Painkiller medicines might reduce the pain temporarily but in the long run, it is not a permanent solution.
Increased pain and discomfort-
Ignoring a torn ACL and delaying ACL reconstruction surgery would most likely increase the pain and other discomforts. A patient with an ACL injury is advised to not avoid surgery and consult the best orthopedic surgeons for their surgery.
Arthritis is a common complication or consequence of an untreated ACL injury. An individual with a torn ACL is more likely to suffer from arthritis in the early years of his life. Arthritis is a permanent condition and has no cure or permanent treatment. Management of symptoms of the condition is the only line of treatment of arthritis.
Muscle loss –
Not treating the torn ACL will make the individual with the ACL injury use the injured limb lesser, naturally. Consequently, there would be muscle loss (atrophy of the muscles) when the torn ACL is ignored.
Sedentary Lifestyle and weight gain-
Walking or running with a torn ACL and a painful limb is very tough. A person with a torn ACL would be intolerant to exercise as such movements would trigger pain or increase the already existing pain. Physical activities would become very limited. A sedentary lifestyle would also result in weight gain, which would be a very bad result of ignoring a torn ACL.
Injury to the other leg-
If the individual has an ACL injury in one leg, his whole weight would shift to the opposite leg. There are higher chances of an injury or even an ACL tear in the other leg as well as there is no balance of weight between both legs and one leg is being overused.
Problems with the posture and spine-
The change in the movements and posture as a result of ignoring the torn ACL can affect other limbs, the overall posture, and the spine.
How is an ACL tear diagnosed?
If you think you have an ACL tear, seek immediate medical attention. Consult an orthopedic surgeon who will perform a knee exam and check your knee’s range of motion and the extent of your injury. The orthopedic surgeon may recommend an X-ray to check the damage to the bones of the knee. If no bone damage is diagnosed with an X-Ray, an MRI of your knee would be performed to confirm an injury to the ACL.
What is the purpose of ACL Reconstruction Surgery?
The purpose of ACL reconstruction surgery is to restore the normal and stable function of the knee. If left untreated, a patient with an ACL tear may suffer from ongoing symptoms of knee instability and pain. The patient may feel a sensation of buckling of the knee and feel his knee is giving out. For most people, this may interfere with their regular activities and impact the quality of life.
There are no guidelines for deciding who can undergo less invasive ACL reconstruction surgery. Most patients are eligible to undergo less invasive ACL reconstruction surgery.
ACL reconstruction surgery tends to be favored in patients:
- Are young or fit and healthy
- Have an active lifestyle
- Play certain sports that involve jumping, pivoting, or rapid acceleration or deceleration, like cricket, football, soccer, or basketball
- Have other knee injuries besides a torn ACL
- Suffer from significant knee instability
Healthy knee functioning is really important for a happy lifestyle and existence. Having a knee that has problems in bending, or a knee that lacks stability to support the body can be extremely difficult to be with.
ACL reconstruction surgery can be life-changing for an individual. With the less invasive surgical approach, recovery from the surgery is much simpler as compared to the traditional ACL surgeries. An orthopedic surgeon’s goal is to restore the ACL and provide maximum benefits from the surgery. Consult expert orthopedic surgeons at Pristyn Care clinic in your city to undergo less invasive