Torn ligaments in the knee, illustration

Torn ligaments in the knee, illustration

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Credit: R. Lazarus/Custom Medical Stock Photo/SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY

Caption: Ruptured ligaments in a knee joint. This is a frontal view of the left knee with the patella removed. The femur is on the right and the tibia on the left. Ligaments are bands of tissue which join bones together and prevent joints bending beyond a certain range. A twisting force or impact has ruptured the anterior cruciate ligament (ACL -centre) and the medial collateral ligament (top), including the slip which attaches to the meniscus cartilage of the joint. This combination is a common sports injury which makes the knee unstable, and usually requires surgical repair.

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