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Orthopaedic Services

Anterior Cruciate Ligament- Introduction

The following information about Anterior Cruciate Ligament (ACL) Surgery will help you understand more about the surgery and might provide you with the solution to the symptoms you may have. If you still have questions, ask your doctor for more information.

What is the ACL?
The cruciate ligaments are a pair of extremely strong, thick ligaments in the centre of your knee joint. You have an anterior cruciate ligament and a posterior cruciate ligament (PCL) and they form a cross, this is where the name cruciate is derived. The ACL lies in front of the PCL running from the outer aspect of the femur (thigh) to the inner aspect of the tibia (shin). The direction of the fibres are as if you had your hands in your pockets.

Functions of the ACL
The primary functions of the ACL are:

  • To prevent forward slipping of the lower leg bone (tibia) on the femur (thigh bone).
  • To link the rotation of the upper leg to the lower leg when twisting and turning.
  • Helps to control the small rolling and gliding movements that occurs in the knee to allow for smooth motion.

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