In minor cases, repairing an ACL includes rest, ice, elevation, anti-inflammatory medicine and physical therapy to regain full range of motion and increase strength of the knee-surrounding muscles.

For patients who experience ongoing instability and swelling with activity, ACL reconstruction may be recommended. For this minimally invasive procedure, doctors make small incisions around the knee and insert a tiny camera to guide them through surgery.

In an ACL reconstruction the tendon is replaced by a healthy tendon (i.e. part of the patella tendon or hamstrings) from another part of the leg or a donor graft will be used to stabilize the joint. Keck Medicine of USC orthopaedic surgeons are pioneers for many joint preservation and replacement procedures and have performed thousands of surgeries.