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How can you tell the difference between a mcl sprain and mcl tear?

By Anonymous November 18, 2014 - 11:33am
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HERWriter Guide


Hi Anonymous and thanks for bringing your question to EmpowHER.

For those who aren't familiar with the term MCL it stands for Medial Collateral Ligament and is a band of tissue on the inside of the knee. The MCL connects the thighbone to the lower leg bone, and can be hurt during activities that involve twisting and bending.

Medical professionals determine whether the injury is a sprain or tear during the diagnostic process. This typically includes questions about how the injury occurred and some tests to determine the person's range of motion (ability to move), degree of tenderness and level of swelling. Additionally, imaging tests such as an x-rays or an MRI may be used to take a deeper look, internally, at the injury site.

MCL injuries are generally viewed as first degree sprains when only a few ligament fibres have been impacted. A second degree sprain involves more extensive damage to ligament fibres, but the ligament is intact. In an MCL tear, the patient has a complete rupture of the ligament and may also have damage to other structures in the knee.

Anonymous, have you been injured? You may want to view our videos on MCL sprains in our sports injuries community section. There's a lot of helpful information there. Let us know if we can help further.



November 18, 2014 - 5:33pm
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