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Knee ligament surgery, including anterior cruciate ligament (ACL) reconstruction, is usually performed to repair damage caused by an injury. During the operation, a graft is taken from another part of your knee or from a donor, or is made from a synthetic material, and is fixed in place of the affected ligaments.

When is cruciate ligament surgery needed?

Tearing the anterior cruciate ligaments (ACL) can be a fairly common sporting injury, causing swelling, restricted movement and pain. Depending on a number of factors, including how much pain you're experiencing, surgery may be your best option for recovery.

At Spire Wellesley Hospital in Southend, Essex, our expert orthopaedic surgeons carry out knee ligament surgery in our clean and comfortable private hospital, with physiotherapy support to help speed your recovery. Our patients come to us from Southend, Basildon, Chelmsford and the surrounding areas whether they're insured or paying for private treatment.

Those wishing to pay for one off private treatment can agree a fixed inclusive package price in advance with our self-pay treatment advisers. To book an appointment with one of our expert orthopaedic surgeons call us on 01702 447 926.

Who will do it?

Our patients are at the heart of what we do and we want you to be in control of your care. To us, that means you can choose the consultant you want to see, and when you want. They'll be with you every step of the way.

All of our consultants are of the highest calibre and benefit from working in our modern, well-equipped hospitals.

Our consultants have high standards to meet, often holding specialist NHS posts and delivering expertise in complex sub-speciality surgeries. Many of our consultants have international reputations for their research in their specialised field.

Before your treatment

You will have a formal consultation with a healthcare professional. During this time you will be able to explain your medical history, symptoms and raise any concerns that you might have.

We will also discuss with you whether any further diagnostic tests, such as scans or blood tests, are needed. Any additional costs will be discussed before further tests are carried out.

Preparing for cruciate ligament surgery

We've tried to make your experience with us as easy and relaxed as possible.

For more information on visiting hours, our food, what to pack if you're staying with us, parking and all those other important practicalities, please visit our patient information pages.

Our dedicated team will also give you tailored advice to follow in the run up to your visit.

Cruciate ligament surgery procedure

We understand that having surgery can potentially be a time of anxiety and worry. Our experienced and caring medical staff will be there for you, holding your hand, every step of the way.

Knee ligament repair is usually performed through keyhole surgery and under a general anaesthetic, which means you'll be asleep during the procedure. This less invasive method generally involves a shorter recovery time than traditional surgery.

During the operation, a small incision (about 5mm long) is made in the skin over the knee that is being treated. Sterile fluid is put into the joint to help get a clearer picture. Another small incision is made for the arthroscope (a long, thin telescope with a light source and camera). Your surgeon then looks into the joint, either directly through the arthroscope, or at pictures it sends to a video monitor.

Surgical instruments are inserted through further small cuts. The torn ligaments are trimmed and the knee is prepared for the replacement graft. The graft is shaped, attached to the bones and fixed in place, usually with screws.

At the end of the procedure, the fluid is drained out of the joint. The incisions are closed with stitches or adhesive strips. The operation usually lasts one to two hours.

While the procedure is normally performed using keyhole surgery, a small number of people need surgery to open up the knee joint. Your surgeon will discuss which procedure is most suitable for you.

Knee ligament surgery at Southend's Spire Wellesley private Hospital is open to all. If you do not have private medical insurance and would like to cover the cost of your own treatment, please call us for a fixed package price on 01702 447 926.

Cruciate ligament surgery recovery time

After this, you will be taken to your room or comfortable area where you can rest and recuperate until we feel you’re ready to go home.

You will usually need to stay at least one night in hospital.

You will see a physiotherapist before the operation, once or twice a day during your hospital stay, and then as an outpatient for a number of weeks or months. During the first few weeks you should be prepared to see a physiotherapist twice a week. The amount of physiotherapy required varies, so please follow the advice of your physiotherapist and surgeon.


Pain relief

If you need them, continue taking painkillers as advised by the hospital. 

We will provide you with a supply of all the medicines your consultant feels you need to take home with you after you've left hospital, up to 14 days. This may be at an additional cost to some patients.


Recovery time

Walking short distances – little and often – will speed your recovery. You can apply ice packs (such as frozen peas wrapped in a towel) to your knee up to four times a day to help reduce any pain and swelling. You must follow your surgeon's advice about driving and returning to work. You shouldn't drive until you are confident that you could perform an emergency stop without discomfort.


How your loved ones can help

Once you’re ready to be discharged from hospital, you’ll need to arrange a taxi, friend or family member to take you home as you won’t be able to drive.


Looking after you

Even after you’ve left hospital, we’re still looking after you every step of the way. After knee ligament surgery, we will provide you with all the appropriate medication, physiotherapy exercises, advice on what to do and not to do with your knee and follow-up support.

Typically your consultant will want to see you after your treatment to see how you’re doing. You will also be seen by a physiotherapist.

On rare occasions, complications following knee ligament surgery can occur, such as infection of the wound or joint, damage to nearby nerves or blood vessels, and tears or stretches to the graft. The chance of complications depends on the exact operation you are having and other factors such as your general health.

We will talk to you about the possible risks and complications of having this procedure and how they apply to you.

If you have any questions or concerns, we’re ready to help.

Why Spire Wellesley Hospital is the best choice for cruciate ligament surgery

We are committed to delivering excellent individual care and customer service across our network of hospitals, clinics and specialist care centres around the UK. Our dedicated and highly trained team aim to achieve consistently excellent results. For us it's more than just treating patients, it's about looking after people.

Knee ligament surgery is undertaken at Spire Wellesley private hospital in Southend-on-Sea by our expert consultant orthopaedic surgeons. Your procedure will be undertaken in one of our three operating theatres and following your surgery you will be made comfortable in your single private bedroom with en-suite facilities and TV. Whilst you are in hospital our team of physiotherapists will assist you with daily excercises and a plan to aid your recovery.

Our professional chefs prepare fresh meals just for you in our onsite kitchen, offering a wide range of dishes and a menu that changes each day. Your friends and family are welcome to visit you and we provide free parking and flexible visiting times, as we believe that they play an important part in your recovery.

Cruciate ligament surgery cost

A knee ligament procedure is available at £6,066.

You can trust Spire Wellesley Hospital to provide you with a single, fixed price (1) so there are no surprises. And, through our carefully chosen partner (2) you can even be considered for interest free finance.

We’re here to help you with making these important choices, so you’re then free to concentrate on your treatment and on getting back to being you.

(1) Important: Please read Spire’s terms and conditions for full details of what’s included and excluded in your fixed price* when paying for yourself.

(2) Zebra Finance Ltd trading as Zebra Health Finance , Lincoln House, Stephensons Way, Wyvern Business Park, Derby, DE21 6LY. 

Find Spire Wellesley Hospital at SS2 4XH

Southend is only 20 miles from the M25 and Spire Wellesley Hospital is a couple of miles from the town centre, just off the A127. We are short taxi ride from the train station, which has a fast and regular connection to London Liverpool Street. 

Directions to our hospital.

Important to note

The treatment described on this page may be adapted to meet your individual needs, so it's important to follow your healthcare professional's advice and raise any questions that you may have with them.