Initial treatment of an MCL injury includes ice to the area, elevation of the joint above the level of the heart, non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs), and limited physical activity until the pain and swelling subside. A hinged knee immobilizer should be used to protect the ligament as it heals. The extent of this type of injury is usually excessive stretching of the ligament causing the pain and tenderness.
Review Date 4/24/2023
Updated by: C. Benjamin Ma, MD, Professor, Chief, Sports Medicine and Shoulder Service, UCSF Department of Orthopaedic Surgery, San Francisco, CA. Also reviewed by David C. Dugdale, MD, Medical Director, Brenda Conaway, Editorial Director, and the A.D.A.M. Editorial team.