The most common injuries occurring to cricketer’s knees are either to the ligaments or to the cartilage.
These are the short bands of tissue that connect bones in and around joints and prevent excessive movement at the joint.
There are 4 major ligaments in the knee:
Medial and lateral Collateral ligaments either side of the knee.
Anterior and Posterior Cruciate Ligaments inside the knee.
Injury to the ligaments occur more often in bowlers as a result of a twist or turn often on a fixed foot, such as catching the stud in the turf,
sliding or landing awkwardly. The injury can either be a strain or in extreme cases cause a tear.
A minor strain will heal in a couple of weeks. A major strain may take a few months to heal.
In both cases treatment as early as possible is recommended with Rest, Ice , Elevation and Compression bandage.
Physiotherapy will include gently mobilising the joint, ultrasound if the injury is to the collateral ligaments, advice about stretches and strengthening programs.
This will also include a program of exercises to get back to the sport of choice.
This does not necessarily need surgery, it depends on the extent of the tear and which ligament is affected. An MRI scan will ascertain whether this is necessary.
If no surgery is performed a similar treatment program will be commenced with no return to sport for at least 8 weeks.