The surgeon will create a small incision in front of the knee while the patient is under anesthesia. This incision will expose the patellar tendon – the thick tissue attached to the kneecap – so the surgeon can remove portions of the tendon and bone to replace the damaged ACL. This removal and transplantation of tissue is referred to as a “graft.”
The surgeon will again create a series of small openings in your skin around the knee. An arthroscope will then be placed through one of the openings to see inside of the knee – additional instruments may be inserted into the other openings. Next, the damaged ACL will be removed after a hole is drilled through the tibia and femur to insert the graft. The new ligament will be anchored down for a successful surgery. New tissue will grow along the graft to further strengthen the joint.
End of Procedure and Aftercare
Once the new ligament is securely placed, the incisions made in the skin are closed and the knee will be sealed with a bandage. The patient may be placed in a brace or splint with a doctor monitoring their condition before discharge from the hospital.