Definition of Ligaments, knee

Ligaments, knee: The four strong, elastic bands of tissue that connect bone to bone in the knee. They provide strength and stability to the joint. These four ligaments connect the femur (the bone in the thigh) with the tibia (the larger bone in the lower leg); the medial collateral ligament (MCL), which provides stability to the inner (medial) aspect of the knee; the lateral collateral ligament (LCL), which provides stability to the outer (lateral) aspect of the knee; the anterior cruciate ligament (ACL), in the center of the knee, which limits rotation and the forward movement of the tibia; the posterior cruciate ligament (PCL), in the center of the knee, which limits backward movement of the tibia. Other ligaments are part of the knee capsule, which is a protective, fiber-like structure that wraps around the knee joint.


Last Editorial Review: 3/19/2012

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