Holy acronyms, Batman! PCL, MCL, LCL, and ACL knee braces


ACL knee braces such as the Delco Corelign are not only recommended for ACL tears, but can also offer stability and support after injury or reconstruction of the PCL, MCL, and LCL. These are the four major ligaments of the knee; they protect and stabilize the knee. Tearing any of them can be very painful and even incapacitating. Just so that you can tell your LCL from your LLC, let’s have a detailed look at each injury.

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Posterior cruciate ligament

Car accidents. Slamming the knee against the dashboard, pushing in the shinbone below the knee and causing a tear.


Contact sports such as football and soccer.

·         Mild to moderate knee pain.

·         Rapid swelling.

·         Instability; a feeling that the knee might give way.


Medial collateral ligament

Pressure or stress on the outside of the knee, such as a block during football.

·         Knee swelling.

·         Locking of the knee with movement.

·         Pain and tenderness along the inner joint.

·         Instability.


Lateral collateral ligament

Pressure or an injury pushing the knee joint from the inside, resulting in stress on the outside of the joint.




Anterior cruciate ligament

Suddenly changing direction, pivoting with the foot firmly planted, twisting or hyperextending the knee, landing awkwardly after jumping, falling during downhill skiing, football tackles.

·         A loud popping sound.

·         Extreme pain.

·         Inability to continue physical activity.

·         Worsening knee swelling.

·         Instability.


A doctor can diagnose these injuries with a physical test (e.g. bending the knee to 25° and applying pressure on the inside of the surface of the knee), or an imaging test like an X-ray or an MRI (magnetic resonance imaging). After diagnosis follows treatment.

Treatment for knee ligament tears





·         Painkillers (ibuprofen, naproxen).

·         Physical therapy.

·         Removing fluid from the joint to relieve swelling (joint aspiration).

·         Arthroscopic surgery to reconstruct the ligament (severe injuries also featuring other torn ligaments, damaged cartilage, or broken bones.)

·         Applying ice to the injured area.

·         NSAIDS (nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs).

·         Raising the knee above heart level.

·         Abstaining from physical activity.

·         Crutches and/or braces.

·         Immobilization.

·         Strengthening exercises.


·         Surgery if other ligaments are involved.



·         Crutches and/or ACL knee braces.

·         Range-of-motion exercises.

·         Muscle-strengthening exercises.

·         A tendon graft to replace the ligament with a piece of tendon from another part of the leg or from a deceased donor.


Another multi-purpose knee brace is the Body Sport Compression Knee Brace with Range of Motion Hinges, which provides compression and support to help in the speedy recovery of ACL and MCL tears.

Related Read:

Knee braces for skiing and snowboarding injuries