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Bone, Joint and Muscle Conditions

PCL Injuries

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We treat mild PCL injuries through physical therapy whenever possible. Surgery is not usually used to treat PCL injuries that don't involve other parts of the knee.

PCL Injuries Treatment Options

Most children with a PCL injury who have no other injury to their knee recover well after taking part in a rehabilitation program. At Seattle Children’s, our rehabilitation specialists provide regular physical therapy designed especially for your child.

Physical therapy for PCL injuries

Your child will have regular physical therapy at our on-site sports lab. Most likely, your child will have physical therapy sessions two times a week for 12 weeks. Afterward, our therapists will give your child a set of specially designed exercises to do at home until the thigh muscles in the front (quadriceps) and back (hamstrings) have regained at least 80% of the strength of the uninjured leg, as measured by tests of strength and coordination. Our doctors will watch your child closely to make sure they are healing well. Children can usually return to their normal activities in six to 12 months.

Surgery for PCL injuries

Surgery is not usually used to treat PCL injuries that happen by themselves. But if an injury moves the piece of bone the PCL is attached to far from its original resting place on the shin bone, your child may have surgery to put it back and attach it again.

If the injury happens along with an injury to the ACL (anterior cruciate ligament) the posterolateral corner or lateral side of the knee, your child may have surgery to make their knees stable with the least possible risk of affecting their growth.

After surgery, your child will have physical therapy.

Who Treats This at Seattle Children's?

Should your child see a doctor?

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Summer 2014: Good Growing Newsletter

In This Issue

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Download Summer 2014 (PDF)