The anterior cruciate ligament (ACL) is a supporting structure in the knee joint which helps to stabilise the knee and contributes to its movement. Because of its anatomical position, the ACL is susceptible to injury particularly during high risk activity or sports such as football and basketball. Injury to the ACL is a fairly common occurrence with almost half of the cases requiring surgery for repair, hence the need for ACL reconstruction. Often times, associated damage may occur to other structures in the knee joint such as the meniscus or the surface of the bone.
Common triggers of ACL tear are:
- Stopping suddenly while running
- Twisting of the knee with the foot planted on the ground
- Jumping and landing on an extended knee
- A direct blow or hit to the knee while it is fixed
- Pushing the knee farther than its usual range of movement