The MCL or medial collateral ligament is one of the major ligaments located on the inside of the knee joint. The lateral collateral ligament (LCL) runs along the outside of the knee. Injuries to these ligaments usually occur when the foot is planted on the ground and a horizontal force hits the leg, such as when an opposing team member tackles a football player. They can also occur if a person twists a knee to one side with their foot planted on the ground. Ligament tears can range from partial — mild and treated with ice and rest — to complete tears. If x-rays reveal the tear is unlikely to heal on its own or with an external brace, a doctor may recommend surgery.
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