Treatment depends on the extent of your injury and whether it just happened or if you've had it for a while. In most cases, surgery isn't required.
Over-the-counter pain relievers, such as ibuprofen (Advil, Motrin IB, others) or naproxen sodium (Aleve), can help relieve pain and reduce swelling.
A physical therapist can teach you exercises that will help make your knee stronger and improve its function and stability. You may also need a knee brace or crutches during your rehabilitation.
If your injury is severe — especially if it's combined with other torn knee ligaments, cartilage damage or a broken bone — you might need surgery to reconstruct the ligament. Surgery might also be considered if you have persistent episodes of knee instability despite appropriate rehabilitation.
This surgery usually can be performed arthroscopically by inserting a fiber-optic camera and long, slender surgical tools through several small incisions around the knee.
Jan. 12, 2017
- Frontera WR. Posterior cruciate ligament sprain. In: Essentials of Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation: Musculoskeletal Disorders, Pain, and Rehabilitation. 3rd ed. Philadelphia, Pa.: Saunders Elsevier; 2015. http://www.clinicalkey.com. Accessed Sept. 30, 2016.
- Posterior cruciate ligament injuries. American Academy of Orthopaedic Surgeons. http://orthoinfo.aaos.org/topic.cfm?topic=a00420. Accessed Sept. 29, 2016.
- MacDonald J. Posterior cruciate ligament injury. http://www.uptodate.com/home. Accessed Sept. 29, 2016.
Posterior cruciate ligament injury