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Is the ACL reconstruction procedure painful?

Often, there could be slight pain for a certain period of time after the ACL reconstruction procedure. You may experience pain associated with swelling around your knee.

A lot of techniques are available to reduce the postoperative pain after ACL reconstruction. Our medical team will work with you and ensure that your pain levels are reduced to a minimum. Here is a list of techniques that may be used to reduce your pain postoperatively:

  • RICE (Rest, Ice application, compression, and elevation): This is the most effective method and is applicable immediately after the ACL reconstruction as it helps to reduce pain, improve knee range of motion, and facilitate recovery. It is important to elevate the leg on which ACL reconstruction was performed. This can be done by placing some pillows under the leg to lift it up.
  • Use of crutches and braces: Most patients experience a lot of pain after the ACL surgery when they begin applying weight on their leg. The use of crutches for a specific period of time helps the knee to recover quickly. A brace that limits movements of the knee helps improve the outcome of ACL reconstruction by reducing pain and graft strain.
  • Pain management medications: A combination of non-steroidal anti-inflammatory medications (NSAIDs), local anesthetics, and opioids. NSAIDs help decrease swelling as well as pain and include Ibuprofen, Naproxen, and Aspirin.

 If your pain levels have not begun to decrease even after a few days, you need to inform your doctor. 

Disclaimer: We do not assume responsibility for the use of the provided information or its interpretation. Our efforts are towards providing current and reliable information; however these should not be considered, or used as a substitute for diagnosis or treatment.

Source: https://www.cedars-sinai.edu/Education/Medical-Library/