Anterior Cruciate Ligament (ACL) Reconstruction

The ACL is one of a pair or ligaments in the knee, the other being the posterior cruciate ligament (PCL). The ACL and PCL “criss-cross” one another, and are sometimes known as cruciform ligaments. The ACL is hugely important for movement, and provides most of the restraining force (85%) to anterior tibial displacement. The ACL is crucial for stabilizing the knee for turning and planting. ACL tears are a very common sports injury, with over 100,000 tears occurring annually in the US.

The ACL goes through a lot in its lifetime, and for most highly active people in general, it gets beaten and pounded around quite a bit. Unfortunately, the knee can take one too many knocks over the course of an athlete’s life, and this can require ACL reconstruction, which is a tissue graft replacement of the ACL in order to restore its function. However, persistent injuries to the knees can end an athlete’s career. Even after surgery, many athletes are given powerful cocktails of opioids and NSAIDs to overcome the pain.

There are many cannabinoid receptors all over our body, and it seems that the knee is no different in this regard. This means that we can target the ECS for therapeutic purposes for knee injuries as well. CBD may help with any bone damage as well.

Value of Medical Marijuana

72 out of 4,276 (1.68%) survey respondents use medical marijuana for the aftermath of ACL reconstruction. Much of the value of medical marijuana comes from its potential as an anti-inflammatory and an alternative to opioid-based medications. Both THC and CBD are powerful anti-inflammatories, as are terpenoids such as pinene, linalool and limonene.

Positives

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Negatives

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Treatments

Indicas were preferred by 27.78% of ACL reconstruction patients, followed closely by hybrids at 26.39%. Sativas were preferred by 19.44% of survey respondents. Anecdotally, there does seem to be a preference towards 1:1 CBD:THC ratios for the management of many conditions, including chronic pain, and many athletes use CBD to help with injuries.

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