Should You Wait Before Having Surgery for an ACL Tear?

Should You Wait Before Having Surgery for an ACL Tear?

Studies found that when people tore or ruptured their ACL, getting surgery on the fresh tear was likely to cause worse health problems half a decade later. A study was done on people between the ages of 18 and 35 that had an ACL injury and half of the group got surgery and physical therapy while the other half of the group only got physical therapy. The group that got surgery was worse off later on because they couldn’t move as easily nor could they play sports. Doctors from the University of Oxford in the UK said that if the knee is also swollen in addition to the torn ACL, getting surgery can lead to a more severe diagnosis and more difficulty in doing day-to-day tasks because of the long recovery time. Exercise therapy is specifically for these kinds of injuries which is why there is a higher success rate with exercise therapy alone than with surgery. Exercise therapy does not do any type of procedure or altering of bone fragments, exercise therapy is helping the leg heal on its own. Delaying knee surgery after a torn ACL has its benefits and exercise therapy is definitely suggested before considering getting a major surgery.

Key Points:

  • 1People with ACL tears often benefitted from exercise therapy instead of immediate surgery.
  • 2Doing ACL surgery directly after an ACL tear can actually prolong the injury and worsen quality of life over time.
  • 3There is some concern that untreated ACL tears could lead to longterm cartilage damage, especially if the meniscus is injured in the original accident.


larger studies will be necessary to truly understand which patients may benefit from an extended trial of non-operative management of their ACL tears.
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HealthStatus has been operating since 1998 providing the best interactive health tools on the Internet, millions of visitors have used our health risk assessment, body fat and calories burned calculators.The HealthStatus editorial team has continued that commitment to excellence by providing our visitors with easy to understand high quality health content for many years.
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HealthStatus has been operating since 1998 providing the best interactive health tools on the Internet, millions of visitors have used our health risk assessment, body fat and calories burned calculators. The HealthStatus editorial team has continued that commitment to excellence by providing our visitors with easy to understand high quality health content for many years.

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