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ACL and PCL Car Accident Injury Claims Lawyers in Georgia

January 12, 2022

Ligament tears are one of the most common injuries in an automobile collision. Tears to the posterior cruciate ligament (PCL) or the anterior cruciate ligament (ACL) are painful and cause significant impairment and instability of the knee joint. If you or a loved one sustained a knee ligament injury in an auto accident caused by a driver's negligence, you could be eligible to receive monetary compensation. 

Contact Us 24/7, Nationwide, at 1-800-LAW-NEED (1-800-529-6333) to speak with one of our experienced attorneys now and at no charge or obligation. Our Georgia car accident injury attorneys are ready to listen, understand your situation, and advise you.

The Common Causes of Knee ACL and PCL Injuries

The following is a shortlist of the common causes of ACL and PCL tears:

Anterior Cruciate Ligament (ACL) Injury Causes:

  • Auto accidents
  • Running and changing direction quickly in sports like basketball, soccer, or football
  • Running and slowing down quickly
  • Jumping

Posterior Cruciate Ligament (ACL) Injury Causes:

Generally speaking, it takes a lot of force to injure the posterior cruciate ligament. These injuries are typically caused by:

  • A blunt impact to a bent knee during an auto accident
  • Sports-related injuries
  • Pulling on the ligament in a twisting injury or hyperextension
  • Slipping on uneven terrain

Types of PCL and ACL Injuries

Both the posterior and anterior cruciate ligaments are predisposed to sprains or tears. These types of knee injuries are common in vehicle accident cases. Ligament injuries to the knee are graded by their severity:

  • Grade 1: The knee ligament was slightly stretched, but the knee joint is stable
  • Grade 2: The knee ligament is partially torn or loose
  • Grade 3: The knee ligament is completely torn, and the knee joint is completely unstable. Most ACL injuries involve complete tears

Posterior cruciate ligament tears occur when the person's knee in a bent position. For example, in an auto accident, a PCL tear can occur when an occupant hits the dashboard with a bent knee.

Posterior cruciate ligament tears also involve the same grades as noted above. One big difference between an ACL and a PCL tear is that a PCL tear is typically a partial tear, and ACL tears are usually complete tears.

How Much Are Knee Ligament Tears Worth?

Determining the value of a personal injury claim is not always very clear-cut. Accident injuries that require surgery will potentially result in more compensation than an injury that does not. Moreover, the total amount of medical bills incurred, the amount of work was missed, and quantifying a person's pain and suffering all affect the value of a case.

One element that could limit the accident victim's ability to recover full compensation for a knee injury is if the at-fault party doesn't have insurance or they don't have enough insurance. This is why we encourage our staff, friends, family, and clients to take out as much uninsured/underinsured auto insurance as they can afford to purchase.

Symptoms of Cruciate Ligament Tears

An injury to the PCL or the ACL will present slightly different symptoms:

Common Signs of a PCL Injury

  • Knee pain
  • Instantaneous knee swelling
  • Difficulty walking on the injured leg.
  • The knee joint feels like it will "give out" 

Common Symptoms of an ACL Injury

  • Unstable knee
  • Knee pain.
  • Slow swelling 
  • The range of motion in the knee is lost.
  • Palpation on the joint line produces pain.
  • Inability to walk on the affected leg.

Diagnosing of PCL and ACL Injuries

The physician will assess a knee ligament injury by checking for knee instability and then making a comparison to the uninjured knee. PCL tears tend to cause the knee to sag backward when the knee is bent over 90-degrees. X-rays will not show ligament tears unless a piece of the bone tears off. This is called an avulsion fracture. MRIs are effective imaging test that helps diagnose ligament injuries in a knee joint. MRIs use radio waves with a powerful magnet to image soft tissues and bones. 

Treating of PCL and ACL Injuries

The treatment of an anterior cruciate ligament tear will depend on the injury victim's needs. For example, a professional soccer player may want to return to the field as quickly as possible, while an older individual may prefer to take time and heal thoroughly. 

Treating an ACL sprain can be surgical or nonsurgical. However, a full ACL tear will not heal without surgical intervention. As long as the knee joint is stable, elderly people can tolerate an ACL tear sometimes without surgery with doctor approval. The physician could prescribe a special knee brace in order to stabilize the knee.  

Once post-surgical swelling goes down, careful rehabilitation is necessary to strengthen the leg muscles that surround the knee. Physical therapy will take a few months or longer to complete. 

Posterior cruciate ligament injuries could heal without surgery. A patient with a PCL injury may be able to heal their injury by resting and using ice, elevation, and compression. The treating physician might also prescribe a knee immobilizer to stop knee movement and crutches to prevent the patient from placing too much weight on the injured knee.

Surgical Treatment of PCL/ACL Tear Injuries

Surgical treatment is the ideal method of repairing an ACL tear. Typically, the orthopedic surgeon will use a tissue graft to act as a scaffold for the new ligament to grow back. These grafts may be taken from a hamstring tendon, patellar tendon, or donor tissue. It will take several months for the new tendon graft to be strong enough for full function.

The surgical procedure is typically done arthroscopically. Arthroscopic surgery is less invasive, and the patient heals much faster from the operation. Scarring can reduce knee mobility.

Rehabilitating a Cruciate Ligament Injury 

Rehabilitation is one of the most important aspects of healing an ACL/PCL tear. Rehabilitation therapy is used with and without surgery. Physical therapy helps to increase the strength and mobility of the knee. It typically starts one to four weeks post-operation. Physical therapy will last several months, and the total recovery time is between 6-12 months.

We Know What It Takes To Win!™ 

If you have been injured or lost a family member due to an accident, contact Montlick & Associates, Injury Attorneys, for your free consultation today. Our law firm has been representing those who suffer serious injuries or lost a loved one in an accident for over 39 years.  Our trial attorneys have recovered billions of dollars for our personal injury clients through negotiated settlements, litigation/lawsuits, settlement of lawsuits, jury verdicts, mediation, and arbitration awards.

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Category: Auto Accidents

Please Note:
All information provided by our blogs is general in nature and should not be relied upon as legal advice. Consult a Montlick attorney for details about your unique situation.