Muscle & Connective Tissue Injuries

What should I expect after having ACL surgery?

A Answers (2)

  • After anterior cruciate ligament (ACL) reconstruction surgery, you will be taken to a recovery area where nurses will monitor your vital signs until the anesthesia wears off. You will be able to go home when your vital signs have returned to normal and you are fully awake. This is usually about 2 hours after surgery.

    Your healthcare providers will discuss with you the outcome of the surgery and what you should do at home. You may not remember this information. Ask a friend or family member to take notes.
  • AHealthwise answered

    Arthroscopic surgery is often done on an outpatient basis, which means that you do not spend a night in the hospital. Other surgery may require staying in the hospital for a couple of days.

    To care for your ACL surgery incision while it heals, you need to keep it clean and dry and watch for signs of infection.

    Physical rehabilitation after ACL surgery may take several months to a year. The length of time until you can return to normal activities or sports is different for every person. It may range from 4 to 6 months.

    This information does not replace the advice of a doctor. Healthwise disclaims any warranty or liability for your use of this information. To learn more visit

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