MOVEMENT AND PERFORMANCE HEALTH SERVICES
Unit 1, 1A Tarrawanna Rd Corrimal NSW 2518
(Adjacent to Plus Fitness)
Call: 02 4283 6566
Email: info@movementandperformance.com.au
 
Physiotherapy  Services - Helping you to perform better at work, at home and in your sport
   Home            Know your body tissues - Ligament


WHAT IS IT?
Ligament.


WHERE IS IT FOUND?
Found at all joints of the body: connects bones.


WHAT IS IT MADE OF?
Made of fibres of very dense connective tissue. Exceedingly strong but doesn't have much stretch (elasticity).


WHAT DOES IT DO?
Joins bones together but also allows for some movement at joints. Ligaments often guide movement and can limit movement at joints.


HOW IS IT INJURED?
If a joint is made to move past its normal range of movement, or in an unnatural direction, the ligament tissue can be stretched or torn.
If the ligament fibres are just stretched this is a Grade I injury. If some (<50%) of the fibres are torn this is a Grade II injury. If all the fibres are torn (the ligament ruptures) this is a Grade III injury. Ligament may also detach from the bone or may pull a piece of bone off where the ligament attaches: this is known as avulsion.


HOW IS IT TREATED?
Tearing causes bleeding and scar tissue to form. A torn ligament may not rejoin or may heal in a stretched or tightened position.
Initial treatment consists of RICE: Rest from painful movement Ice 10-15 minutes every 1 to 2 hours Compression bandage Elevation above the level of the heart.
It is also important to have the injury assessed and diagnosed with treatment commenced, if requires.
Ongoing treatment may also include ice/heat; strapping/bracing; connective tissue massage; stretching; strengthening exercises; balance and proprioceptive exercises.


HOW LONG DOES IT TAKE TO GET BETTER?
Grade I - usually 7 to 10 days.
Grade II - usually 4 to 6 weeks.
Grade III - can be 8 to 12 weeks.
In cases of Grade III injury the joint may become unstable or the ligament may fail to heal. In the cases surgery is usually required to repair or replace the injured ligament. This is more common with the ACL in the knee and lateral ligaments of the ankle.
Call Movement and Performance Health Services if you have a ligament injury!