Ligament, posterior cruciate

The knee joint is surrounded by a joint capsule with ligaments strapping the inside and outside of the joint (collateral ligaments) as well as crossing within the joint (cruciate ligaments). These ligaments provide stability and strength to the knee joint. The posterior cruciate ligament (cruciate means shaped like a cross) crosses behind the anterior cruciate ligament within the joint, as indicated here: {{}}The knee is a joint which has three parts. The thigh bone (femur) meets the large shin bone (tibia) forming the main knee joint. This joint has an inner (medial) and an outer (lateral) compartment. The kneecap (patella) and the femur form a third joint, called the patellofemoral joint. The meniscus is a c-shaped cartilage pad between the two joints formed by the femur and tibia. The meniscus acts as a smooth surface for the joint to move on. The knee joint is surrounded by fluid-filled sacs called bursae, which serve as gliding surfaces that reduce friction of the tendons. Below the kneecap, there is a large tendon (patellar tendon) which attaches to the front of the tibia bone. There are large blood vessels passing through the area behind the knee (referred to as the popliteal space). The large muscles of the thigh move the knee. In the front of the thigh the quadriceps muscles extend the knee joint. In the back of the thigh, the hamstring muscles flex the knee. The knee also rotates slightly under guidance of specific muscles of the thigh. The knee functions to allow movement of the leg and is critical to normal walking. The knee flexes (bends) normally to a maximum of 135 degrees and extends (straightens) to 0 degrees. The bursae, or fluid-filled sacs, serve as gliding surfaces for the tendons to reduce the force of friction as these tendons move. The knee is a weight-bearing joint. Each meniscus serves to evenly load the surface during weight- bearing and also adds in disbursing joint fluid for joint lubrication.

Medical dictionary. 2011.

Look at other dictionaries:

  • posterior cruciate ligament — n a cruciate ligament of each knee that is attached medially in back between the condyles of the tibia, that passes upward and forward through the middle of the knee crossing the anterior cruciate ligament to attach to the medial aspect of the… …   Medical dictionary

  • Posterior cruciate ligament — Infobox Ligament Name = PAGENAME Latin = ligamentum cruciatum posterius genus GraySubject = 93 GrayPage = 342 Caption = Diagram of the knee Caption2 = From = posterior intercondylar area of the tibia To = medial condyle of the femur MeshName =… …   Wikipedia

  • Cruciate ligament, posterior — The knee joint is surrounded by a joint capsule with ligaments strapping the inside and outside of the joint (collateral ligaments) as well as crossing within the joint (cruciate ligaments). These ligaments provide stability and strength to the… …   Medical dictionary

  • Posterior cruciate ligament (PCL) — The knee joint is surrounded by a joint capsule with ligaments strapping the inside and outside of the joint (collateral ligaments) as well as crossing within the joint (cruciate ligaments). These ligaments provide stability and strength to the… …   Medical dictionary

  • posterior cruciate ligament — noun Date: 1981 a cruciate ligament of each knee that attaches the back of the tibia with the front of the femur and functions especially to limit the backward motion of the tibia …   New Collegiate Dictionary

  • posterior cruciate ligament — noun See cruciate ligament …   Australian English dictionary

  • PCL (posterior cruciate ligament) — The knee joint is surrounded by a joint capsule with ligaments strapping the inside and outside of the joint (collateral ligaments) as well as crossing within the joint (cruciate ligaments). These ligaments provide stability and strength to the… …   Medical dictionary

  • Cruciate ligament of knee — can refer to: * Anterior cruciate ligament * Posterior cruciate ligament …   Wikipedia

  • Ligament — Diagram of the right knee. Typical joint In …   Wikipedia

  • Cruciate ligament of atlas — Ligament: Cruciate ligament of atlas Membrana tectoria, transverse, and alar ligaments. ( Transverse ligament and vertical portion visible intersecting at center.) Latin ligamentum cruciforme atlantis …   Wikipedia

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