Surgery for RG3

Brian TrabulsiBrian Trabulsi, MPT, ATC is a physical therapist at Rex Hospital Outpatient Rehabilitation in Raleigh.

Triangle Redskins fans’ worst nightmare has come true. After watching Robert Griffin III (RGIII) leave the field on Sunday, speculations regarding the extent of his knee injury have been confirmed. Redskins’ team physician, Dr. James Andrews, reports that RGIII has torn his LCL (Lateral Collateral Ligament) and his ACL (Anterior Cruciate Ligament). Tests regarding the integrity of his previously repaired ACL were inconclusive until now. Various news reports state RGIII will undergo surgery on Wednesday to repair the two ligaments. While ACL injuries are fairly common to athletes, LCL injuries are infrequent. The ligaments provide front-to back (ACL) and side-to-side (LCL) stability to the knee. Tearing both ligaments complicates the injury by creating a multidirectional instability of the knee.

Rehabilitation usually takes 6 to 8 months, but may be longer with the two tears. Following surgery, Redskins’ trainers and therapists will work to minimize pain and swelling, regain range of motion, and improve strength. Return to play guidelines vary, but the Redskins organization and their fans are hoping that his world class speed and agility will return to original form.

So, before writing-off the 2013 season, Redskins’ fans can look to Minnesota Vikings running back, Adrian Peterson, for encouragement. He tore his ACL and MCL on the last play of the 2011 season, but was healthy in time to play the 2012 season. Oh and by the way, he also happened to rush 2,097 yards, coming with nine yards of Eric Dickerson’s all-time record of 2,105.