Ligaments are vital structures that connect bones to other bones within the body. ThePosterior Cruciate Ligament– otherwise more commonly referred to as the PCL – is a ligament in the knee joining the back of the shinbone (lower leg) to the inside end of the thigh bone (upper leg). It crosses over the Anterior Cruciate Ligament forming and “X” inside the knee. The purpose of this ligament is to aid in stabilization of the front and back movements of the knee.
The Posterior Cruciate Ligament is stronger than some of the other knee ligaments and therefore less prone to injury than these other ligaments. When an individual injures this ligament there is not the popping sound commonly heard with an Anterior Cruciate Ligament (ACL) injury.
PCL injuries generally occur as the result of over stretching or pulling of the ligament. It may be injured due to direct physical trauma to the tibia (shinbone) when the knee is bent thereby over stretching the ligament. Something as simple as missing a step also is common among knee injuries.
Symptoms of a PCL Sprain or tear include swelling, lack of motion, and knee pain. Individuals have also experienced that while they can walk on their knee, it is not completely stable.
Immediate treatment of the PCL injury include elevation of the knee and the application of cold or ice packs. Rest and minimal use of the injured knee are also important to healing. Light compression of the knee joint with the use of an elasticized support bandage may also be directed by your care giver.
Because of the location of the PCL, surgery is generally not a recommended treatment for this type of injury. More often though, individuals with PCL tearing require physiotherapy.
There are limited options for treatment of the PCL ligament due to its location, but the therapeutic energy of Blood Flow Stimulation Therapy™, (BFST®) will penetrate deep into the knee reaching this interior ligament greatly enhancing its healing rate and improving extensibility of the ligament and surrounding tissue.
Not only does BFST® aid in the duration of healing, but it helps to prevent long term complications. Arthritis, pain, and lack of mobility, are some of the more common long term complications from a PCL injury. By speeding up the healing process with BFST® swelling and pain are reduced.
To reduce the risk of injury to the knee regular exercise is an important component. Gradually increasing the intensity of exercise and being aware of the movement of the knee are key factors as well. Avoiding sudden movements such as twisting or overstretching of the joint will help keep the knee stable.