Cigarette smoking impairs ligament healing, researchers find

The list of reasons you shouldn’t smoke has gotten longer. Researchers at Washington University School of Medicine in St. Louis are reporting that smoking interferes with ligament healing. Each year in the United States there are more than 20 million reported ligament injuries, and MCL injuries—which affect a ligament supporting the knee joint—are the most common. Studying mice with MCL injuries, the team discovered cigarette smoking impairs the recruitment of cells to the injury site and delays healing following ligament repair surgery.