Anterior Cruciate Ligament (ACL) injuries commonly happen in sports and due to accidents or other physical activities. The ACL, an important ligament in the knee, provides stability and helps control the motion of the joint. When the ACL gets torn or injured, it can lead to:
- Reduced quality of life
ACL reconstruction surgery restores the function of the ACL and relieves the symptoms associated with its injury. ACL reconstruction has become a widely practiced and highly successful surgical procedure in India.
The average cost of ACL reconstruction in India ranges from Rs. 90,000 to Rs. 3,00,000, with an average of Rs. 1,30,000.
What is the Procedure for ACL Reconstruction?
ACL reconstruction involves replacing the damaged ACL with a graft. The graft can be harvested from sources such as the patient’s tissue (autograft) or a donor (allograft). An Orthopedic Surgeon specializing in knee injuries typically performs this procedure.
The steps involved in ACL reconstruction are as follows:
- Before surgery, a thorough evaluation is conducted, which includes a physical examination, imaging tests (like MRI), and discussions with the patient regarding their goals and expectations.
- The surgery iRs performed under general anesthesia to ensure the patient is pain-free and unconscious.
- The surgeon selects an appropriate graft source. Common choices include the patellar tendon, hamstring tendon, and quadriceps tendon for autografts or allografts from a tissue bank.
- The surgeon makes small incisions around the knee.
- An arthroscope is inserted through the incision to visualize the joint.
- The chosen graft is prepared to match the size and length of the torn ACL.
- The surgeon drills tunnels in the tibia and femur to place the graft in the same position as the original ACL.
- The graft is secured using screws, sutures, or other such fixation devices.
- The surgeon closes the incisions, and the knee is wrapped in a bandage.
- Patients are provided with pain management and physical therapy after surgery.
What is the Recovery Process After ACL Reconstruction?
The success of ACL reconstruction depends on the surgical procedure, post-operative care, and rehabilitation process.
The recovery process after undergoing ACL reconstruction surgery in India includes the following:
- Immediate post-operative period: Patients are closely monitored after the surgery. Pain management is a priority, and patients may be prescribed pain medications.
- Hospital stay: A hospital stay is usually a day or two. During their stay in the hospital, the patients receive instructions on:
- How to care for their surgical site
- Manage pain
- Perform basic exercises
- Physical therapy: Patients are advised to start physical therapy within a few days after the surgery. The aim of physical therapy is to:
- Restore knee mobility
- Strengthen the muscles around the knee
- Improve overall joint stability
- Gradual return to activities: Patients are advised to avoid high-impact activities and sports for several months. This depends on their progress and the surgeon’s recommendations.
- Follow-Up Visits: Regular follow-up visits are mandatory:
- To monitor progress
- Assess the healing process
- Adjust the rehabilitation plan
- Full Recovery: Achieving a full recovery may take several months and sometimes up to a year. This may vary from patient to patient and depends on factors such as the type of graft used and the surgeon’s guidance.
- Maintenance Exercises: After formal physical therapy, patients are encouraged to continue with maintenance exercises. This is advised to keep the knee stable and strong.
Why Do Patients Prefer India for ACL Reconstruction?
The cost of ACL Reconstruction in India contributes to its popularity. Compared to Western countries, the cost is considerably lower.
Several factors contribute to this cost advantage:
- Affordable Medical Infrastructure: India has a well-established medical infrastructure that is more cost-effective as compared to Western nations.
- Skilled Workforce: Indian hospitals comprise well-trained and highly qualified medical professionals.
- Lower Overhead Costs: Costs such as administrative expenses, insurance, and medical equipment and supplies in India are generally lower as compared to other Western countries.
- Currency Exchange Rates: Foreign patients seeking medical treatment in India benefit from favorable currency exchange rates, making healthcare even more affordable.
- Competition Among Hospitals: The presence of numerous hospitals and healthcare facilities in India creates a competitive environment. Hospitals strive to offer competitive prices and quality services to attract domestic and international patients.
- Government Initiatives: The Indian government has initiated programs to promote medical tourism, which includes ACL reconstruction. These programs boost the healthcare industry and contribute to the low cost of ACL reconstruction in India.
Which Orthopedic Surgeons in India Perform ACL Reconstruction?
Some of the top Orthopedic Surgeons providing ACL reconstruction surgery are mentioned below:
Dr. Ashok Rajgopal:
- Dr. Ashok Rajgopal is one of India’s most experienced Orthopedic Surgeons, with over 32 years of experience.
- He has a record of completing 25,000 total knee replacement surgeries.
- His special interests include joint replacement surgery, knee surgery, arthroscopic surgery, and arthroplasty surgeries.
Dr. Prithvi Mohandas:
- Dr. Prithvi Mohandas is a recognized Orthopedic Surgeon with over 20 years of experience.
- He gave lectures on atypical scenarios in Indian hip surgery in Seoul, Beijing, Colombo, Bangkok, Manchester, and Rochester, Minnesota.
- He collaborated with the Hospital for Special Surgery, New York, to determine the variables that affect hip implant design, minimally invasive surgery, and the effect of load transfer in the femoral head.
Dr. Jayant Arora:
- Dr. Jayant Arora is a renowned Orthopedecian and Joint Replacement Surgeon with an experience of over 20 years.
- He is a world-renowned figure in Partial Knee replacement and total Knee replacement using Computer navigation and Robotic surgery. He is also an expert in treating sports injuries using Arthroscopic surgery.
- He has collaborated with renowned hospitals both nationally and internationally.
Dr. Atul Mishra:
- Dr. Atul Mishra is a well-known Orthopedecian and Joint Replacement Surgeon with an experience of over 23 years.
- He received advanced training in knee surgeries from various world-renowned international institutes in Italy, Japan, & Germany.
- He performs over 1000 knee replacements & arthroscopies in a year.
ACL re construction is a widely practiced and successful surgical procedure in India, allowing individuals to regain mobility and quality of life. The healthcare infrastructure in India has also seen significant growth, with specialized orthopedic centers, accredited facilities, and a focus on medical tourism. This, coupled with physical therapy and follow-up care, makes India an attractive destination for ACL reconstruction.