ACL repair is typically an outpatient procedure done under general anesthesia (or in some cases regional spinal anesthesia). After surgery, a knee brace and/or crutches may be required for 1 to 4 weeks. Much of the success of ACL reconstructive surgery (i.e. regaining knee motion and strength) depends on the patient's dedication to rigorous physical therapy, lasting 4 to 6 months or more.
ACL reconstruction surgery is done to replace the torn ligament in the center of your knee and to restore the stability of the knee joint. With the assistance of arthroscopy, the torn ligament is replaced with a graft. The graft is known as an autograft if using the patient’s own tissue, or an allograft if using donor tissue. In addition to the smaller incisions used during arthroscopy, a slightly larger incision is often made just below the knee in order to gain access to graft tissue and fasten the new ACL in the proper position.