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Deciding to have surgery

The decision to have knee surgery will depend on the extent of damage to your anterior cruciate ligament (ACL) and whether it affects your quality of life.

If your knee does not feel unstable and you do not have an active lifestyle, you may decide not to have ACL surgery.

But you should be aware that delaying surgery could result in further damage to your knee.

One study of people with ACL tears found their risk of damaging the injured knee increased by 1% for every month between the injury occurring and surgery.

Things to consider

When deciding whether to have ACL surgery, the following factors should be taken into consideration:


If necessary, children can also have ACL reconstructive surgery. But as they're still growing, the procedure is likely to be modified to ensure that the growth areas are not affected.

It's a trickier operation and may need to be carried out by a surgeon with a special interest in childhood injuries.

If surgery is not possible, a brace and refraining from sports until the child is fully grown may be an alternative.