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ACL reconstruction

ACL ReconstructionWhat is the anterior cruciate ligament?

The anterior cruciate ligament (ACL) is one of the important ligaments that stabilise your knee (see figure 1). If you have torn (ruptured) this ligament, the knee can collapse or ‘give way’ when making twisting or turning movements.

How does an ACL rupture happen?

An ACL rupture happens as a result of a twisting injury to your knee. The common causes are contact sports and skiing injuries. You can injure other parts of your knee at the same time such as tearing a cartilage or damaging the joint surface.

What are the benefits of surgery?

Your knee should not give way any more. This will allow you to be more active and you may be able to return to some of or all your sporting activities.

Are there any alternatives to surgery?

The physiotherapist can give you exercises to strengthen and improve the co-ordination of the muscles in your thigh.

Wearing a knee brace can sometimes help while you are playing sports.

What does the operation involve?

Various anaesthetic techniques are possible. The operation usually takes an hour to 90 minutes.

Your surgeon will make one or more cuts around your knee. Most surgeons perform the operation by an arthroscopy (keyhole surgery), using a camera to see inside your knee.

Your surgeon will replace the ACL with a piece of suitable tissue from another area of your body. The ends of the replacement ligament are fixed with special screws or anchors into holes drilled in the bone.

What complications can happen?

General complications

  • Pain
  • Bleeding
  • Infection of the surgical site (wound)
  • Unsightly scarring
  • Blood clots
  • Difficulty passing urine

Specific complications

  • Break of the kneecap
  • Damage to nerves around the knee
  • Infection in the knee joint
  • Discomfort in the front of the knee
  • Loss of knee movement
  • The knee keeps giving way
  • Severe pain, stiffness and loss of use of the knee (complex regional pain syndrome)

How soon will I recover?

You should be able to go home the same day or the day after.

Your surgeon may want you to wear a knee brace for a few weeks. Once your knee is settling down you will need to start intensive physiotherapy treatment, which may continue for as long as six months.

Regular exercise should help you to return to normal activities as soon as possible. Before you start exercising, ask the healthcare team or your GP for advice.

It is unlikely that your knee will ever be as good as it was before the original injury.

Summary

If your knee continually gives way after an ACL rupture, reconstruction offers the chance of improving the stability of your knee in everyday life and in sporting activities. You may be able to return to a level of sport that otherwise would not be possible.

This procedure is available to NHS, self funding and privately insured patients at The Horder Centre. Finance options available.

Guide price for self pay patients

Autograft Reconstruction of Anterior Cruciate Ligament

  Consultation Diagnostics Treatment Care after discharge
Hospital costs Included £350 £6330 Included
Consultant costs £220 Included Included Included
Estimated total cost £6900
Estimated length of stay 1 night

The guide price is correct as of 2nd March 2017

What's included

The prices in the table above (the “Guide Prices”) show what most patients should expect to pay at each appointment and on admission to hospital. The Guide Prices you pay might be different depending on your medical history and the type of implant you choose or your Consultant advises is best for you. Your price quotation will be made clear to you before you proceed with any tests, consultations or treatment.

For more information please contact our Private Patient Pathway Manager on 01892 620934 or email pp@horder.co.uk for a personalised quote and further details on procedures available.

Acknowledgements

Author: Mr Stephen Milner DM FRCS (Tr. & Orth.)

Illustrations: Medical illustration Copyright ©medical-artist.com

Copyright © 2017 EIDO Healthcare Limited - The operation and treatment information on this webpage is produced using information from EIDO Healthcare Ltd and is licensed by the Horder Centre.

The intellectual property rights to the information belong exclusively to EIDO Healthcare Limited. You may not copy, print out, download or otherwise reproduce any of the information other than for your personal, non-commercial use. The information should not replace any advice that your relevant health professional would give you.

Issued June 2017 | Expires end of May 2018

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