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HomeAnswersOrthopedician and Traumatologyacl injuryIs surgery mandatory for grade 3 ACL tear?

I have got grade 3 ACL tear. Should I consider surgery?


The following is an actual conversation between an iCliniq user and a doctor that has been reviewed and published as a Premium Q&A.

Medically reviewed by

Dr. Divya Banu M

Published At August 2, 2019
Reviewed AtAugust 18, 2023

Patient's Query

Hi doctor,

I had a bike accident ten days ago, and since then, I have been experiencing difficulty in walking properly. I was admitted to the hospital on the morning two days ago. Both the X-ray and CT scan reports came back normal. Subsequently, I was advised to undergo an MRI for my right knee, which revealed an ACL tear. I am wondering if there is a treatment option that does not involve surgery for this knee issue. The X-ray did not show any fractures, but the MRI indicated a grade three tear of the ACL. Could you please provide insights into whether surgery is necessary or if there are non-surgical alternatives available for treating an ACL tear? Are there any serious consequences if I opt not to undergo surgery? I have attached my reports for your reference. Kindly provide your insight.


Welcome to icliniq.com.

I read your query and understood your concern. I have reviewed the reports you attached (attachments removed to protect the patient’s identity). Considering your age and the presence of a complete ACL (anterior cruciate ligament) tear, the most advisable approach is to undergo surgery for its reconstruction. While there is a non-surgical option involving physiotherapy and hamstring muscle strengthening, this approach does not fully compensate for the loss of the ligament. If you continue to experience symptoms like knee buckling even after undergoing physiotherapy, it is an indication that surgery may be necessary. If you decide not to undergo the operation, there is an increased risk of developing late-stage osteoarthritis in the future, which could potentially necessitate surgery at a later stage. I hope this has helped you. Kindly follow up if you have more doubts.

Thank you.

Probable diagnosis

The probable diagnosis is a grade three ACL tear.

Same symptoms don't mean you have the same problem. Consult a doctor now!

Dr. Sharoff Lokesh Mohan
Dr. Sharoff Lokesh Mohan

Orthopedician and Traumatology

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