Wednesday, November 14, 2007

More on the Hallowed LCL

Stephanie Bell of has a very informative piece on Adrian Peterson's outlook and what an LCL injury is. I'll be honest--I was shocked to see it, but only because I haven't read anything on that I could describe as "informative" in a long time. So what's an LCL?

"The LCL is one of the four main stabilizing ligaments of the knee, situated on the outer aspect of the joint, and it runs from the far end of the thigh bone (femur) to the near end of the outer bone of the lower leg (fibula). It is opposite the medial collateral ligament, which occupies the same spot on the inner aspect of the knee joint, running from femur to tibia (larger lower leg bone). The main function of the LCL is to protect the knee from excess bowing outward (also called varus stress), or more simply, it helps control lateral stability. It is injured if a bowing or varus force is applied that exceeds what the ligament can handle, typically as a result of direct contact. Peterson told Minneapolis' Star Tribune that he felt a helmet or a shoulder hit his knee and then felt the pain."
She goes on to state that Peterson's LCL injury is a "Grade II+" which means that it's serious enough to raise questions as to when the Purple Jesus will return. And while it means that he'll be at risk to reinjure it throughout his career, it is not unusual for injuries of this nature, and that does not mean that it's that big of risk in the future.

The most important part? The Purple Jesus should be able to return in his full glory:
"Peterson will be left with some decreased lateral stability in his knee; the ligament is forever altered based on the extent of his injury. However, his ability to compensate for it with muscular support (and he may wear a protective brace as an additional measure) could allow him to return looking like the same running back."
So we've got that going for us. Which is nice.

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