Symptoms: Lateral collateral ligament (LCL) sprains are rare. In most cases, LCL sprains occur when something hits the inside of your knee while your foot is on the ground—like a football player being tackled while in mid-stride having their knee pushed outwards. LCL sprains are usually accompanied by immediate pain and possibly a popping or tearing noise. Subsequently, you may experience difficulty in walking.
Overview: LCL sprains are caused by stretching or tearing of the LCL, one of the four ligaments that connect the bones around the knee joint. The LCL, which runs down the outside of each knee, connects the femur (thighbone) to the fibula (one of the bones in your lower leg). The LCL’s job is to prevent excessive rotation of the tibia (shin bone) while reinforcing side-to-side knee stability.
LCL sprains occur mainly from injuries suffered in contact sports or skiing, but they can also occur from slipping on a patch of ice and landing awkwardly. Sadly, injuries to the LCL often occur in conjunction with injuries to other parts of the knee. Frequently, an ACL tear accompanies an LCL sprain.
If you suspect damage to your LCL or other knee structures, you should have your knee thoroughly examined by Dr. Suzan Starler, D.C. to determine what damage has occurred. Then, she can prescribe an effective treatment and care regimen.