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Treating Knee Injuries in Sports

Mass General Brigham Sports Medicine specialists diagnose and treat a full spectrum of knee injuries, from the common to the complex. We offer a range of non-surgical and surgical treatment options. 

male goalie on field catching soccer ball at night

Experts in treating knee injuries 

Our nationally recognized sports medicine specialists diagnose and treat a full spectrum of knee issues, from the common condition to the complex injury. Our experts can help you reduce knee pain and regain the mobility and strength you had before a knee injury. We focus on getting you back to your active life safely and quickly. Mass General Brigham is the premier sports medicine provider with a proven track record of expertise and innovation in orthopaedic care. 

For urgent knee injury appointments after hours and on weekends, please contact our virtual care clinic.

A team approach to patient-centered care for treating knee injuries

Our multidisciplinary team of sports medicine doctors are here for you each step of the way to provide comprehensive care—from diagnosis and treatment to rehabilitation and recovery. We partner with patients to develop a customized treatment plan tailored to their unique needs and goals, as we have experience and expertise in treating athletes who participate in all sports, including those most associated with knee injuries, including soccer, lacrosse, football and cheerleading. We develop sport-specific plans to optimize recovery and prevent further injuries.

Our different specialties work together to help patients achieve the best possible outcomes. Your care team may include orthopaedic surgeons, physiatrists, physical therapists, physical therapist assistants, sports trainers, nutritionists, psychologists, strength coaches and other medical experts.

Our physicians drive breakthroughs in sports medicine research, technology, and treatment. This means our patients receive the most advanced care, have access to more knee treatment options and experience safer, quicker recoveries.

Common knee injuries in sports

We treat the full spectrum of knee conditions, including:

  • Knee cartilage injuries: Cartilage tears, articular cartilage injuries, meniscus and meniscus root tears, osteochondritis dissecans 
  • Fractures: Kneecap, tibia (shin bone), fibula (calf bone) or malleolus (ankle bone) 
  • Ligament injuries: Torn ACL, PCL, MCL or LCL, multi-ligament knee injuries 
  • Loose body: Small pieces of cartilage or detached bone that float around the knee 
  • Osteoarthritis: Knee arthritis 
  • Patella (kneecap) injuries: Patella dislocation, medial patellofemoral ligament tear (MPFL), also called patellar instability, patellofemoral pain syndrome (also called runner's knee) and patellar tendonitis (also called jumper's knee)
  • Other knee conditions: Unspecified knee pain, swelling, knee instability, knee dislocation or subluxation (partial knee dislocation), knee sprain, knee instability or knee contusion 

Options for treating knee injuries

Treatment options for knee injuries depend on several factors, including your knee injury or chronic knee pain, the condition of your knee, your age and overall health. 

Your treatment plan may involve one or more approach.

  • Physical therapy exercises to strengthen muscles around the knee
  • Injections
  • Wearing a knee brace, cast or splint
  • Using crutches 
  • Limiting activity or avoiding high-impact activity
  • Resting, icing or applying heat to the injured knee
  • Over-the-counter pain medications

  • ACL, PCL, MCL or LCL reconstruction surgery
  • Arthroscopic knee surgery to treat loose bone fragments, torn ligaments, scarring, etc.
  • Cartilage restoration or transplantation
  • Kneecap realignment or stabilization surgery  
  • Knee reconstruction surgery
  • Knee replacement surgery
  • Meniscectomy (trimming the meniscus), meniscus repair and meniscus transplant
  • Medial patellofemoral ligament (MPFL) reconstruction surgery 

Preventing and Treating Athletic Injuries

Learn about preventing and treating injuries from Christian Lattermann, MD, research director of Mass General Brigham Sports Medicine.

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