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Anterior Cruciate Ligament (ACL) repair is an innovative treatment of knee ligament injuries. The procedure enables patients to return to physical activity, much quicker than a standard ACL reconstruction (often three months after surgery). The London Clinic is one of the first private hospitals in the UK to offer ACL repair, offering an effective alternative to reconstructive surgery.

The ACL is one of four important ligaments that stabilise the knee joint. In a healthy knee, it is especially important in providing stability during pivoting or rotatory movements. An ACL injury results in a tear of the ligament, it is a serious injury which initially is very painful resulting in a stiff swollen knee. An ACL injury may lead to instability of the knee and surgery  may be necessary.

Traditionally an ACL tear has been treated by a reconstruction whereby tissue is taken from elsewhere in the body (often from a hamstring tendon) and used to “reconstruct” a new ACL.

ACL repair is a new approach to treatment. Our expert surgeons can reattach the torn ends of the ligaments together with the latest knee ligament repair technology. Our dedicated physiotherapy team will help you get back on your feet using The London Clinic’s personalised patient pathway. Our specialist physiotherapy department can help with recovery form surgery using techniques such as acupuncture, electrotherapy, massage and rehabilitation in our hydrotherapy pool.


ACL Repair is not suited to everyone. The decision as to whether or not your ACL can be repaired will depend on a few factors including; where your ligament is torn and time lapsed since injury. Your orthopaedic consultant will require a MRI scan to find out where the ligament is torn. The final decision about whether a repair is possible is made at the time of surgery.  Repairing the ACL enables patients – even professional sportsmen and women – to get back to their typical activities often three months after surgery, as opposed to a year, following ACL reconstruction.

A repair is probably more likely to be successful in younger patients, such as teenagers and young adults.


Many people are concerned that ACL surgery may increase pain, decrease mobility or take longer for them to recover. However, ACL repair is an innovative and proven technique, with a select number of expert surgeons performing the procedure in the UK. Post-operatively, most people experience less pain and are able to return to sports after three months.

The London Clinic offers a MRI scan, so that your orthopaedic consultant has all the information necessary to customise a treatment plan to your needs.

To increase the chance of repair being successful, the procedure should be performed within the first month of injury. Delaying surgery can lead to the build up of scar tissue in the knee, making a repair less likely.


An ACL repair is done under general anaesthetic, so you will be asleep during surgery. 

This is arthroscopic surgery (keyhole) meaning your surgeon will make a few very small incisions in your knee, before using specialist surgical instruments to reattach the torn portion of the ACL. This surgery takes about the same time as having an ACL reconstruction but is much less invasive as the trauma caused to the patient’s knee is much smaller. This means post-op pain is significantly reduced and the knee will feel “normal” much quicker.


One of the main advantages of ACL repair is that once the tissue has had time to heal, you can return to daily activities, including sports such as football, rugby and skiing.

In some instances recovery can be much quicker, typically three to four months to heal, as opposed to one year with ACL reconstruction. This can be different for every patient as no two patients and no two operations are exactly the same.


During ACL repair, our physiotherapy team is integral to helping you to return to your normal level of function and physical activities. Patients are usually advised a personalised pathway by one of our chartered physiotherapists. This may include pre-surgery rehabilitation, exercises, aquatic therapy, exercises on a stationary bike and assessment of muscle strength on our Biodex Isokinetic Machine. 


Consultant Orthopaedic Knee Surgeon, Mr Deepu Sethi, performs over 100 ACL procedures each year, making him one of the most experienced ACL surgeons in the UK. He has brought this expertise to The London Clinic to provide patients with world-class orthopaedic knee care.


Mr Sethi is actively involved with ACL research and education, having taught both nationally and internationally. He collects data on the outcome of his surgery and registers his patients on the National Ligament Registry, dedicated to analysing and improving the outcome of cruciate ligament reconstruction.

Treatment cost

The London Clinic offers affordable, competitive self-pay packages for certain treatments.

Patients have the option to spread the cost of treatment with Chrysalis Finance.

Please call +44 (0)20 3613 7502 to speak to our helpful team to find out more and to book an appointment.

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