Medial Ligament Rupture Grade 3 - Treatment & Prognosis

Monday, November 30, 2015

The Medial Collateral Ligament is the large ligament on the inner side of the knee joint linking the thigh bone and the shin bone. A Grade 3 medial ligament rupture is a severe injury because the ligament has been completely ruptured. In these cases, there's also usually damage to the cartilage and other ligaments.

Signs & Symptoms of a Medial Ligament Rupture

When the ligament has been ruptured you'll feel a lot of pain and won't be able to put your weight on the affected knee.  Bruising can occur and your knee will become swollen.


Complete rest with the knee elevated is essential in the first few hours after the rupture.  Ice packs and a compression bandage are useful to limit the degree of swelling and anti-inflammatory/painkiller medication should be taken.  The medication and treatment you get in the first 72 hours can stop further damage being done.

Surgical treatment

You'll need reconstruction surgery to repair the damage, followed by a long course of physiotherapy.

Physiotherapy for a medial ligament rupture

Physiotherapy for this condition is a vital component for good healing and to help you regain your pre-injury strength and mobility.  It will also ensure you don't end up with a weak knee that will keep letting you down in the future.

Fortunately, physiotherapy can do a lot for this type of injury and typical treatments include:

  1. A gradual return to activity program
  2. Advice on safe activities whilst you recuperate
  3. Biomechanical correction with specially designed shoes
  4. Exercises to improve flexibility, strength and balance
  5. Heat treatment
  6. Hydrotherapy and warm water swimming
  7. Joint manipulation to prevent scar tissue restricting knee movements
  8. Soft tissue massage for reducing pain and inflammation
  9. Stretching to increase mobility
  10. Ultrasound

A key component of rehabilitation is an individually designed exercise program to strengthen the quadricep, hamstring, adductor and gluteus muscles.  This is necessary to improve muscle control of the knee joint during weight-bearing activities and protect you against future injuries.


With today's advanced surgical procedures and a physiotherapy rehab program of at least 8 weeks, the prognosis for regaining your pre-injury condition is good.  But everything depends on you following the physiotherapist's advice and completing the exercises carefully!

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