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Year : 2022  |  Volume : 22  |  Issue : 1  |  Page : 1-8

Collateral ligament injury of the knee in sports

1 Department of Reconstructive Orthopedic, King Fahad Medical City, Riyadh, Saudi Arabia
2 Department of Surgery, Orthopedic Division, King Abdulaziz Medical City, Riyadh, Saudi Arabia
3 Department of Orthopedic, King Saud Medical City, Riyadh, Saudi Arabia

Correspondence Address:
Mohammed Talal Alzahrani
Department of surgery, Orthopedic Division, King Abdulaziz Medical City, P.O. Box 22490 Riyadh 11426
Saudi Arabia
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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None

DOI: 10.4103/sjsm.sjsm_33_21

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Athletes are particularly susceptible to medial or lateral collateral ligament injuries of the knee while playing sports. Sports are responsible for nearly half of all collateral ligament injuries, many of which are mild to moderate in severity. Frequently, the collateral ligaments are injured in association with other ligaments of the knee, necessitating surgical intervention and other measures to treat these injuries and restore full range of motion and function in the knee. In this review, we first discuss the stabilizing and supportive role of the collateral ligament and address why it is particularly susceptible to injuries in a sports setting. We then address the types of sports most frequently associated with damage to these ligaments, and note the role of gender and contact versus noncontact sports in the varying incidence rates of sports-related injuries observed in the literature. While conservative measures are typically used to treat collateral ligament injuries, more severe cases (particularly injuries that involve multiple ligaments) do require surgical intervention, with outcomes depending on the affected structures. We conclude by discussing a number of preventive strategies that can be employed to protect these ligaments – and the knee – from new or recurrent damage, with the hope that these preventive measures will be incorporated into future practice. Ultimately, athletes and clinicians should be informed on how to prevent debilitating injuries to preserve athletic performance and enhance or maintain an athlete's current quality of life.

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