Multiligament Knee Reconstruction

What is Multiligament Reconstruction of the Knee?

Multiligament knee reconstruction is a surgical procedure to repair or replace two or more damaged ligaments of the knee joint. The surgery can be performed using minimally invasive techniques.

Indications for Multiligament Reconstruction of the Knee

Multiligament reconstruction of the knee is usually indicated in cases of high-energy knee injuries where multiple knee ligaments are torn or avulsed such as:

  • Motor vehicle accidents
  • A direct blow to the knee
  • Falling on the knee from a height
  • High-impact sports injuries 

Symptoms of Multiligament Knee Injuries

Patients with multiligament knee injuries may experience:

  • Pain
  • Swelling
  • Limited range of motion
  • Injuries to nerves and arteries of the leg
  • Knee instability

Diagnosis of Multiligament Knee Injuries

To accurately detect which ligaments are torn and the extent of the tears the following diagnostic procedures may be performed:

  • Comprehensive clinical evaluation of the knee
  • Imaging studies such as X-rays and MRI scans
  • Arthroscopic examination

Procedure for Multiligament Reconstruction of the Knee

  • The procedure is usually performed under general anaesthesia. 
  • Arthroscopic instruments are inserted through tiny keyhole incisions made over the knee to reattach ligaments to the bone using special sutures. 
  • A ligament may also be reconstructed using a graft taken from the patient (autograft) or donor tissue (allograft).
  • Your surgeon will create a tunnel in the thighbone and shinbone through which the grafts are inserted to replace the torn ligaments.
  • After the grafts are placed, fixation devices are used to secure the grafts and hold the ligaments in place while healing occurs.

Post-operative Care Following Multiligament Reconstruction of the Knee

Following the surgery, you will be given pain medication to keep you comfortable. 
Physical therapy will be recommended for the restoration of normal knee motion and muscle strength after surgery. You will be required to use crutches and a knee brace for 6 to 8 weeks with minimal or no weight bearing during this time.

Risks and Complications of Multiligament Reconstruction of the Knee

As with any surgery, there are risks and complications that may occur following a multiligament knee reconstruction. These can include:

  • Complications of the anaesthesia
  • Bleeding
  • Infection
  • Vascular or nerve injury
  • DVT Deep Vein Thrombosis (blood clot)
  • Failure of the reconstruction

Knee Specialists