Knee Ligament Injury
The knee ligaments, along with muscles and tendons, allow the knee to bend and straighten, while also providing stability when needed.
Each side of the knee has a collateral ligament, ensuring the lower leg cannot move sideways at the knee. The cruciate ligaments in the middle of the joint ensure the lower leg cannot slide forward or backward or rotate excessively in relation to the upper leg.
When a knee collateral ligament is injured, swelling arises at the site of injury due to small blood vessels being torn, causing a bruise (haematoma) to be visible under the skin.
The first few days after injury, it can be difficult to determine the extent of ligament damage because the swelling and pain decreases the ability to precisely examine the knee.
The injured knee feels stiff and painful. Depending on the injury severity, healing generally occurs within 8-12 weeks. Chronic instability may occur with inappropriate treatment.
Image 1: Medial knee ligament injury