FAQ about ACL Reconstruction Surgery


Most commonly general anesthesia is used during ACL reconstruction, so you will be unconscious during the entire procedure. ACL (anterior cruciate ligament) reconstruction is usually done through small incisions- the first incision holds a thin, tube like video camera (arthroscope) and others allow the surgical instrument access to the joint space.

How ACL Reconstruction is done?

In ACL reconstruction, the surgeon will remove the damaged ligament. The damaged ligament is replaced with a segment of tendon, tissue similar to ligament that connects muscle to bone. This is called grafting. The surgeon operating will use a piece of tendon from another part of your knee or a tendon from a deceased donor.  The surgeon will drill socket or tunnel into your thighbone and shinbone to accurately position the graft, which is secured to your bones with screw or other fixation device. The raft will serve as scaffolding on which new ligament tissue can grow.

After the ACL, what precaution to be taken?

Once you have fully recovered from the anesthesia you will be allowed to go home later the same day. Before you o you will be asked to practice walking with crutches, and you may be asked to wear a knee brace to help protect the graft.

Before you leave hospital you will receive instruction on when and how to shower and change the dressing. Also you will be briefed about post surgery care. Like

  • General rest
  • Ice pack application
  • Compression wrap to be wrapped around the wound
  • Elevation while sleeping like laying down with knee propped up
  • Progressive physical therapy to strengthen the muscles
  • Exercising taught by the physical therapist

When to have ACL reconstruction after injury?

People who have any difficulty with twisting, turning or pivoting after the damae should consider having ACL reconstructed. This is because repeated turning and twisting mechanism can damage both cartilage in the joints and menisci.

How long is an ACL Surgery Recovery?

To prevent the retear of the ACL reconstruction patient has to through proper recovery phase after surgery. Sometimes you can get back to your normal activities by 5 or 6 months. But the 9 month period for the full recovery is ideal time. It is important to make sure that an athlete has a full return of strength, agility and endurance to minimize the risk of reinjury, then a person can be fit for all the activities.


Dr Dhananjay Gupta

Dr Dhananjay Gupta
Director and Senior Consultant,
Orthopaedics and Joint Reconstruction and Replacement Surgeon
Fortis Flt. Lt. Rajan Dhall Hospital, Vasant Kunj, Delhi.

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