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ACL Injury in Children

Medically reviewed by Last updated on Jul 7, 2024.

What is an anterior cruciate ligament (ACL) injury?

An ACL injury is a partial or complete tear of the ACL. The ACL is a ligament in your child's knee that connects the tibia (shin bone) to the femur (thigh bone). Ligaments are strong tissues that connect bones. The ACL stops the tibia from sliding too far forward and keeps the knee stable.

ACL Tear

What are the signs and symptoms of an ACL injury?

How is an ACL injury diagnosed?

Healthcare providers may test the function of your child's ACL. They may move the knee, leg, or foot in different directions. Your child may be asked to lean or hop using the leg with the injured knee. Your child will be asked to tell the provider if he or she feels pain during these or other activities. Both of your child's knees may be checked for any abnormal movement. Your child may need the following tests:

How is an ACL injury treated?

How can I manage my child's ACL injury?

When should I seek immediate care?

When should I call my child's doctor?

Care Agreement

You have the right to help plan your child's care. Learn about your child's health condition and how it may be treated. Discuss treatment options with your child's healthcare providers to decide what care you want for your child. The above information is an educational aid only. It is not intended as medical advice for individual conditions or treatments. Talk to your doctor, nurse or pharmacist before following any medical regimen to see if it is safe and effective for you.

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Further information

Always consult your healthcare provider to ensure the information displayed on this page applies to your personal circumstances.