Knee ligament injuries can be painful, restrictive, and often require surgical treatment and extensive recovery. Individuals who’ve sustained a serious knee injury as the result of an accident or fall on the job or otherwise may need to seek compensation from the responsible party to help recover costs of knee ligament surgery and lost wages because of missed time at work.
What Is a Knee Ligament Injury?
Ligaments connect bone to bone. These ligaments are designed to provide support for the knee and also limit the range of motion of the joint. Ligaments that are damaged are compromised in their ability to do their job, and as a result the knee can become unstable.
The knee joint has four major supporting ligaments that could be damaged in an injury or accident. These ligaments connect the tibia (shin bone) to the femur (thigh bone). The four major ligaments in the knee, as described on the Johns Hopkins Medicine website, are as follows:
- Anterior cruciate ligament (ACL): This ligament controls the knee’s rotation and the range of movement that the tibia has in a forward motion.
- Lateral collateral ligament (LCL): This ligament provides the outer knee with stability.
- Medial collateral ligament (MCL): The inner knee is stabilized by this ligament.
- Posterior cruciate ligament (PCL): This ligament is in the center of the knee and moderates the range of movement of the tibia in a backward direction.
Ligaments can be stretched or completely torn in an accident or fall. The severity of the damage to the ligaments dictates what treatment will be necessary to repair the knee and restore normal function. In more complicated cases or when the injured person cannot manage normal daily functions, surgical intervention may be necessary. Surgery may be followed by lengthy physical therapy.
What Types of Knee Ligament Surgery Might a Patient Require?
While serious knee injuries may require a total knee replacement, torn ligaments may require surgical repair or replacement, also known as reconstruction. According to the Johns Hopkins Medicine website, this may require use of healthy tendons from elsewhere in the body, such as from the kneecap or hamstring.
The surgeon may graft the healthy tissue in place of the damaged ligament in order to stabilize the knee. This procedure is often completed in an outpatient surgical center under general anesthesia with follow-up visits and therapy required for a full recovery.
Risks associated with a knee ligament surgery include the following:
- Blood clotting
- Stiffness or laxity of the knee after surgery
If you experience severe pain, redness or drainage from the surgical site or fever after ligament surgery, seek immediate attention from a doctor. These symptoms could signal infection or other complications.
You May Recover Damages if Your Knee Injury is Related to an Accident
Knee injuries can be very costly. The time required for proper healing can lead to several weeks of missed work, and costs may include costs for diagnostic tests, prescriptions for pain medications, and surgery and therapy. Sometimes this can create an unmanageable financial burden.
If you sustained a knee injury in an auto or work-related accident or as the result of a fall on someone else’s property, you may be entitled to compensation from the liable party. Such compensation can help you regain financial stability and ease stress related to your injury.
Consult an attorney who handles personal injury and workers' compensation cases to review your case and determine what may be the best course of action for your case.
Walker, Billingsley & Bair Helps Des Moines Accident Victims
Walker, Billingsley & Bair helps individuals injured by other parties recover damages to which they're entitled. We understand the complex nature of various types of insurance claims or lawsuits and we can help you navigate the legal process. Call us today at (888) 435-9886 to set up a free consultation.