or Connect
EpicSki › The Barking Bear Forums › Ski Training and Pro Forums › Fitness, Health, Nutrition, Injury, and Recovery › Quadriceps Tendon Rupture, Repair and Rehab
New Posts  All Forums:Forum Nav:

Quadriceps Tendon Rupture, Repair and Rehab - Page 41

post #1201 of 10802

Brace is gone. 

Dr. gave me a much smaller knee support made of neopreen with smaller hinges.  I have to modify the one side as the hinge digs into the calf.

Dr. said I could drive, so look out Denver, here I come!


Dr. said I should be back 100% in 6 or so months.  Wants to see me in September.


PT this afternoon. 


I still cannot do a straight leg lift, but can lift with bent knee.  It does ache though.

post #1202 of 10802

Hello all,


I'm an old-timer in this forum, but it's a while since I've visited.  I would like to hear from others who have had at least one-year recovery from QTR.


Had complete rupture of left quad tendon in Feb 2008.  At time of injury, I was a very active, fit "young" fifty, running at least 20 miles per week. 6'1" and 167 lbs.  No drinking, no smoking, healthy diet. (I have maintained the same weight level despite my inability to run any longer by keeping a strict diet.)  Surgery was day after accident.  Leg was immobilized in brace for seven weeks before I could start PT (blood clotting at end of 4th weeks delayed my start of PT). I regained about 98% flexion, but much less extension.  


My patella does not slide smoothly, but catches and makes a "click" sound (doesn't feel any better than it sounds), when I do various "normal" activities such as extending my leg straight in front of me or walk down stairs.


Oh, yeah, stairs. Going up and down (especially down) is not easy.  I need to use a handrail when descending.  As a practical matter, this prevents me from carrying anything with both hands while going down stairs.


Most worrisome is that I have done all the physical therapy, and then some, that has been assigned to me, yet my degree of recovery now - nearly 16 months later - is only a fraction of my previous level of ability.  I can walk without any assistance, but suffer mild discomfort whether the distance is short (1 block) or long (5 miles).  I still have a "tight" feeling above the knee, as if there were a band wrapped around the bottom of my quadriceps.  Also, I regularly suffer a "collapse" of my knee while walking, no matter whether the distance is short or long  - the knee gives out and I must catch myself (thank goodness I have good reflexes and a very strong right leg) to keep from falling.  The cause seems to be in the tendons rather than the knee, but it is the knee that bends and collapses.


I continue to go to the gym 5 x week to recover greater strength, endurance and control.  I ride an upright stationary bicycle, I "climb" the stair-master, and I exercise on the "elliptical machine" - but need to grab the handles.  In other words, I can only use exercise machines that allow me to stabilize myself.  I walk on a treadmill, but I still can't jog, let alone run, not even a very short distance.  Just can't land forcefully on my left leg while maintaining full control over it.  I also use various weight machines for different leg muscles.


I keep wondering why some of you have recovered so well and so quickly, when I have not, despite my excellent healthy and strength and effort and determination. At the time of the injury, my surgeon told me that most QTR patients can expect a 98% recovery in all their old activities.  At this point, 16 months post-surgery, I would rate my recovery at about 33% - I can walk (not as well as before), but that's about it.  My surgeon now tells me that he has other QTR patients whose recovery remains worse than mine. In his words: "They would trade places with you in an instant."


I would like to hear from any of you whose profile is similar to mine and who have had similar recovery difficulties.  You can write me at phillyrun@hotmail.com


I don't mean to discourage anyone.  The good news for EVERYONE OF YOU is that you WILL get better than you are today and you will return to some degree of normalcy.  I am still hoping for further improvements and even to run marathons again, despite my slow and imperfect recovery.


Best wishes to all of you,





post #1203 of 10802

Hi All and welcome newbies!!  you have found a good forum to discuss this serious injury.


Me: injury 10/26/07 surgery 11/12/07


i consider myself completely recovered, meaning, i do not feel any limitations on physical activity. having said that, i still feel a "tightness" around the tendon/knee, some days the knee feels like my "mechanic put in the wrong viscosity grease for the outside temperature", if that makes any sense to any of you. on occasion, i feel a little pain following heavy activity for extended periods of time. i do feel that the "tightness/band" has lessened in the last 1-2 months and that gives me hope one day it will be gone (my OS thought that was possibly due to nerve damage, although he said he did not cut through the major nerves).


dbrow: while the majority of us consider ourselves "athletic", and some are extreme sport enthusiasts, the majority of causes of this injury are trips, slips and falls. i too slid down 4 (4!) stairs to cause the "pop!". ( i dont think i have mentioned, but later i discovered i had "blown out" the side of my shoe, a loafer!).


pbuster: your recent reply caused me to respond again.  i am sorry for your lack of ability to gain your former level of activity.  i would say it took me 9 months to feel like i was "back", but nearly a full 12 months before i felt "normal".  perhaps you want to visit a different OS. I can hear yours saying "some would love to have your level of recovery".....but seems like most here have had a higher level of activity return.  so why have you not with your PT etc?  maybe you should mix in an occasional beer and cigar?   please keep us posted on your recovery.


Best to All!

Keep pluggin' !



post #1204 of 10802

1 Year 2 Months



Time to check in, it has been a few months. Things are coming along with ok with me. Strength is coming back slowly, had my best workout last week since the injury was able to hit the squat machine with some fairly heavy weight without pain in my patellar tendon. Think this has to do with the Do-It-Myself Graston massage (to cheap to pay someone to do it) work I have been doing twice a week to get the repair site softened up.


Sundays and Thursdays I spend about an hour on my knee. Do 20 to 30 minutes of ultra sound (bought last year Amazon $250) around the repair site (don’t know if this is doing anything but do it anyways). After which I lube the site up with some greasy lotion. Break out my long thin chrome screw driver ($10 Home Depot) grabbing both ends and rubbing the repair site fairly hard fast/slow with the knee both relaxed and straightened also bent and flexed positions doing this for a good 20 to 30 minutes. You can really fell the rough spots in the repair site when you are doing the rubbing. Right now the inside half is in good shape soft and not so rough, and have been focusing working the outside half about 2 to 3 inch section from the top of the knee cap down.


 It gets a bit sore and swelled up for almost day afterwards but feel great after that. Seem like the looser and softer the repair site is getting the stronger my knee and quads are getting. It is coming along at a slow pace but it is getting there and I am going to keep working it till it does, might take another 6 months or longer.


I think a huge key to recovering from this injury getting the repair site health, pliable and loosened up. There are some lucky people here that have gotten ROM back quickly, healed with minimal scar tissue and minimal quad atrophy. Those of us with stiff scarred down repairs are having a much harder time.


PhillyBuster: Sorry to hear you are having a hard time getting back. I also was having the clicking and crunching every now and then but only when swinging my leg while sitting on the counter or in a chair. That has disappeared and only have  a little crunchiness under the patella tendon, think from all the scar tissue issue I had.


I concur with bulldog go get a second or third opinion.  

post #1205 of 10802

Hey Graceella


My knee was sore for several days even though I iced and elevated  kept waking up with warm knee so I put myself back in the brace when in the house doing what ever  for about a day and ahalf and it helped.


Take care all! 




post #1206 of 10802

4 Months Post-Op


Hey y'all,


It's been nice to see some of the old-timers back on the forum for a bit. Thanks for your more extended experience with the recovery process.


Today is 4 months post-surgery, and I plan on celebrating with a bike ride with my wife a little later on. Everything still feels surprisingly solid in the knee. Over the past few days, I feel like the swelling on top of my knee is starting to give some ground. I can see the beginnings of the countours that make it look like a real knee again instead of a big puffy mass in the middle of my leg :). Strength is still increasing and the ROM is still progressing.toward the right leg limits.


Since some of the folks further into the recovery are reading, could you please share your experiences with starting to run again? When did you do this as part of PT/recovery? What did it feel like? What kind of process was involved in getting back a normal stride? Did you work on short sprints? What was the time frame before you felt comfortable running again?


Phillybuster, I'd second the voices suggesting that you see another OS. Have they done a post-surgery MRI to see if there's anything else going on? I'm sorry that the function hasn't returned as fully for you. I went back and read all of your posts after your message showed up. When did you feel the clicking for the first time? Was it shortly after surgery, or did it show up later in your recovery? Best wishes with the ongoing process. Please keep us posted about what's going on.

post #1207 of 10802

Just past the year mark - will be posting results of strength test and final doctor advice when I see him in 2 weeks.


Summary so far:

5/28/08 left quadricep rupture (about 2 inches above knee, so tendon to tendon repair) (age 48)
6/05/08 - Surgery (Dr. ok'd full weight on leg after surgery--but immobilizer on for 6 weeks except for PT)
6/18/08 - Staples removed and PT started (3 x/day at home AND 3 x/week at PT facility)
7/15/08 - No more immobilizer
8/04/08 - 90 ROM
9/30/08 - Full range of motion
December 2008 - able to go up AND down stairs without holding rail (slow)

January 2009 - tested 70% strength on injured leg on Biodex

Currently - doing my same exercises daily (check my old posts for exercise regimen).  Currently 20 pounds on leg extension 10 x 4 (max- Dr. said no more than 20 lb. on extension for me), and 25 pounds leg flexion (new people - do not do any weights until the doctor tell you it is ok.)  I've been adding a pound every other week since January to my extension/flexion).



I was pretty excited when I finally got up to 20 pounds on leg extensions last week.  A far cry from the early days when I couldn't even lift my leg a fraction of an inch off the bed on my own!  I've gone slow and steady, doing what the doctor and PT told me to do. 


Also, progression from a slight knee dip, to 1 inch, and up to 16 inch step (max)  I go up on my 16 inch step on injured leg and lower myself on uninjured leg 10 x 4, then do it sideways 10 x 4 which means I'm going up and going down on injured leg.  The stairs has been the hardest thing to do and if your leg can't handle stairs, it isn't going to do well on uneven ground jogging or running. 


My doctor didn't want me to jog and I've had reminders from my leg as to why I shouldn't jog outside.  Mr doctor said there is more protection holding onto rails of treadmill and setting it up pretty steep (level 10).  That way you have rails to hold onto in case your leg gets tired, you don't have to worry about falling, and you won't trip on a rock, uneven pavement, whatever.  I can fast walk really good and do it every day, up and down ramps to get to the train, and to work.  I also walk up and down a flight of stairs every day keeping my hand just above the rail.  I go slow, but my leg doesn't buckle and I make sure there is nothing on the step like water, trash, etc., that would cause me to slip.


PhillyBuster - I haven't had the clicking or discomfort.  Try not to get discouraged.


Everyone has a slightly different rupture which means everyone will have a different recovery.  The doctors do their best but I notice that they don't get your hopes up too high.  My doctor said in the beginning that with surgery and therapy, I should be able to walk and get around normally.  Notice he didn't guarantee I would be running marathons, etc.  They want to encourage you, but they also don't want to promise you the moon because even with their best efforts, they really don't know how things are going to turn out.


The last time I saw my doctor he mentioned a doctor friend of his had a quad rupture injury and he wasn't doing as well as I am.  My last visit with my doctor was going to be in January, but I think he really is curious is see where I would be in a year.  And I'm hoping my Biodex strength test shows my injured leg is about 90% or more strength.  If the test does show that, then I will ask my doctor if he approves any other type of activity. 


When my leg was at 70% and below strength, of course he wasn't going to approve jogging or running --that would be setting myself up for trouble.


Even though I can do stairs, I would never go down stairs holding something heavy in both hands that will throw my balance or and/or not allow me to see where my feet are going --that is setting yourself up for a possible accident!  In public I use the handrails on stairs in crowds, wet weather, night, because you can't be too careful.


Try to focus on what you can do:  bike, treadmill, weights, fast walking, step machine.


I would encourage people here to ask their doctor about getting their leg tested to see what percentage strength it is at compared to their uninjured leg.  I wouldn't bother asking about that test until you are at the 6-7 month mark.  And then at the year mark ask to get tested again. At least you can have some real measure of your leg strength and then discuss from there where to go with exercises and physical therapy.


Considering how much could have gone wrong with surgery and recovery, I'm very thankful that I can walk normal and smooth and do normal activities.  If I have to stay on a treadmill to "jog" then so be it.  At least I can move without a cane or crutch or walker.


There is a girl at work that doesn't have the same injury, but she had an injury to her leg almost a year ago and she had so much pain she was on pain meds for a long time.  She had to have some nerves burned just to eliminate the pain and she couldn't even do physical therapy because she was in so much pain.  She limps along with a cane and she is about 40 or so.  She said she is inspired by my progress and attitude.  So, you see, it is all relative how your recovery is coming along.  Be positive and do your exercises every day!


Edited by CaliforniaQuadPop - 2/27/10 at 4:41pm
post #1208 of 10802

22 Weeks Post Op - Rgt Leg QTR  


Hey All,


Welcome to all recent additions to the group and good luck to all with your rehab. Much work is needed but the good news is some of us will come out in better shape at the end of the day due to all the effort required to rehab this injury!


Thanks for that Phillybuster, Bulldog and in2falling. In recent weeks, I had concluded I was the lone mere mortal on here, thus the need to just work like crazy on this leg and ponder why my ROM is so slow in returning compared to others, even though I'm working like crazy on it. I had concluded I had a different injury - must be in the wrong forum.  


Kidding aside, progress for me continues at an incredibly slow pace - slow but steady improvement in ROM and slow increases in the strength around the knee, the repair site and the Quad itself. Still have a very long way to go on all counts. The great news is - with each passing week there IS progress. 


At last measurement, my ROM was 112* from just above 90* 4 weeks ago but it reverts back to about 95* when not warmed up and aggressively pushing it. Stiff as a board! The good news in2falling re scar tissue is that the MRI done a few weeks back shows no "apparent" complications, no unusual scar tissue or arthrofibrosis, just "normal" swelling, fluids, etc. consistent with this injury. The leg remains swollen, stiff and numb but the advice remains - keep working it!


Continued success to all with your own personal recovery - as stated many times on here - every injury is different, every OS doing the repair is different, every PT is different and all healing rates have their own internal clock.  


Must go to the club for a quick work out and get prepared for a soccer tourney today - as a coach, not a player!


Continued progress to all,




post #1209 of 10802

Hi all -

I'm moving up to about 4 months post-op -- more or less the same as garland.  I was able to do my first sailboat race these weekend.  My crew was with me in the BVI's when I did the QTR, so we all had a lot to prove.  I was clearly less mobile, so I stuck to my job of steering the boat.  We won the race by a large margin, which was a great way to start the season.  This morning I was back to my other sport, road biking.  I was able to do a fairly hilly 21 miles in about 85 minutes.  My OS has absolutely prohibited me from standing on the pedals, so I'm learning to do the climbs seated.  In the past I would mix standing and sitting about 50:50.   My wife and I are signed up for a 50 mile charity ride in a month, so I have my work cut out for me.


Its nice to read about everyone's progress.  Keep it up and most importantly keep up your spirits.

post #1210 of 10802

Garland:  my rehab protocol from the OS said "16 weeks: light running". I was very disappointed when i could not do that! I had a major (!) "hitch" in my stride.  When that continued, while on an elliptical with my PT near by, I asked. He pointed to his head, and said maybe it isnt in your knee!  So extensive work in the pool plus focusing on an appropriate stride, I got to my max speed on the treadmill (road work too hard on the knees anymore) by about week 28 with a normal gait.

CQP: congrats on 1 year!



post #1211 of 10802

12 weeks post-op.


Saw OS yesterday for the first time in 6 weeks. She was ECSTATIC. I have never seen a doctor so excited. She said that I definitely needed no more PT (my PTs were leaning toward my coming back weekly) and that I didn't need to see her again. I asked if my recuperation was better than normal, and she said "WAY better."


I still am awkward on stairs (that mid-range part of flexing, with my weight on it), and need to hang onto the railing if doing them the regular way, but that is improving. Every few days there is a hint of buckling when I walk, but less and less. Muscle size and strength is coming back nicely, but I have a ways to go in that dept.


I asked her is it was true, as someone here said, that it takes up tot a year for the tendon to fully reattach. She said yes. I asked out of curiosity where on the patrella the tendon was sewed on, and she said that they actually bore LENGTHWISE through the patella and so it is swered onto the whole length, in a way. I didn't know that! And as I suspected she said that these stitches stay in forever.


I am going to focus my leg work in the gym on plain ol' size and strength, and stairs/steps. I was not much of a runner, so not too concerned about that.





post #1212 of 10802

Been reading on and off for a few days since I got nowhere else to go!  Great thread that is really helpful to know what to expect and to understand what I am going through. Thanks to the 12 month + post ops also keeping us informed.  


My story;  8 days ago, I was walking down my friends steep driveway with my 4 year old 10 ft in front, and my 8 year old 10 feet behind.  Trying to keep up with the little one, I slipped on the gravel, and I am sure the rest of the story is pretty familiar. 


I unfortunately suffered a bilateral quad rupture.  You are reading that correctly; both legs.  I was a healthy 44 year old male in decent shape. 


Luckily I was a quick ambulance ride away from the hospital, and first thing in the morning, the on call orthodpedic surgeon checked me out.  He came in at 8:30 AM, and had me in surgery by 10:30.  He was thankfully a knee specialist with a great reputation.  Lucky again.   Said the surgery went fantastic and that he would be seeing me again in his office two weeks after he discharged me.


I was totally "disconnected" if you will, from my lower leg that night, but about an hour or two post surgery, I could move my calve a bit with my quad muscle, and it felt great to know i was "connected" again.


Three nights in the hospital, and then home, I am in the cast/braces, and getting up on a walker three to four times a day to keep things moving.  We got a Rx for a chair that lifts me up, and the raised toilet, so I go from bed to bath to living room.  Maybe next week I will check out the kitchen.  In a fair amount of discomfort with some occasional pain.  Obviously the surgical wound is pretty traumatic.


So here I sit, 7 days post surgery, 8 days post injury trying not to sound too pathetic.  I have a great wife and three active kids (4,6,8 yrs. old).  I get and a lot of sympathy from family, friends, and work. Ice and my computer are my best friends, while pain killers and the television are evil necessities.


I can't wait for my first visit in 9 days to change the braces from the full extension to some with a little flex, or get the OK to take them off when I am in bed.   My wife is a champion, but it will be great not to be such a burden on her. 

post #1213 of 10802

Rcm111, So very sorry to hear of your double injury. I thought one was bad but 2 must be  just awful. The great thing is that you were able to have the surgery right away. This definitely will make a difference in your recovery. I am 6 months from surgery for right quad rupture but didn't have surgery for over 3 weeks from time of injury. My progress is slow and may not be complete because of the delay.

Rejoice in the fact that you have a good support system in your family. Know that this is a slow moving recovery but that you WILL get through it. Keep as positive a mental attitude as is possible. Revel in every bit of progress that you make no matter how small. Remember that you are not your injury but you are still the same person you were before you fell. I will be praying for you.  

post #1214 of 10802

Rcm111, welcome to the club, I just can't imagine bilateral QTR's.


There are a half dozen or so other bilaterals that belong to club caza epic ski QTR so you are part of an elite group - stay positive and good luck. We're with you for the next 1 - 2 years - yikes, that scares me when I say that!


I had an excellent PT session this morning after giving formal PT a rest last week, we didn't measure but I do believe my ROM improved a little bit more.


Hope all the Dad's had a great day yesterday - I did!



post #1215 of 10802
Thread Starter 

Hi all: 


It has been a long time since I visited and posted.  Hello to all you newbies.  I'm very sorry you ended up here, but, just stick with it, keep a positive attitude and you will see results.  I'm also gratified to see some of the oldsters still posting - thanks for keeping us updated gang!


It has been almost a year and a half since my surgery.  I am still not back to full strength.  I can bike a hundred miles, hammer up steep hills on the mountain bike, hike up hill no problems, but still have issues with going downhill - particularly in difficult, variable terrain.  I also have some issues going down stairs - I don't need to hold onto the railing, but I have to be conscious of every step - I can't simply bound down the stairs the way that I used to do it! 


I have decided to try a couple of things.  First, my wife did an overnight mt. bike ride this past weekend, and one of the people she rode with was a pain management doctor (a "physiaphist"?).  He suggested that with the numerous injuries and surgeries I have had on this knee, perhaps I have damaged the nerves.  There is apparently some simple tests with which they can tell whether there has been damage - if so, there is therapeutic treatment.  Second, I am going to see another Orthopaedic surgeon.  Mine is great, has been very helpful and did a tremendous repair.  BUT, but, but, but . . . . I should be all the way back by now.  I shouldn't have to worry about bounding down steep slopes either on foot or on skis.  Maybe a second opinion could help . . . . .?


Regardless, it is nice to be riding hard and long with friends and family again.  The family and I are doing the Tour de Wyoming in July - about 400 miles over six days.  Really looking forward to it.  I wish the same happiness for all of you that I have found in recovery - and soon!


Idaho Guy

post #1216 of 10802

Idaho Guy - Thanks for posting.  I have many of the same interests as you and hope that I'll be doing the same kind of biking and hiking that you're doing next year (I'm about 4 months post-op and biking about 20 miles with hills).  I'm interested in your comments about going down stairs and especially biking or hiking down difficult terrain.   This is clearly the area that is coming along the slowest for me.  My PT tells me that this motion stresses the eccentric contraction of the quads and is the slowest and most difficult to rehab.  She's put me on a "diet" of one and two legged squats, lunges, side lunges, step-downs and other one legged exercises to work on the eccentric contraction as well as quad extensions to strenghten the concentric contraction and exercises to strengthen the hip flexors and core.  I was wondering if this is similar to the program that worked for you and if there is anything you would suggest that was particularly helpful.   Best to all.

post #1217 of 10802

hi guys and gals,


it's been a pretty uneventful period since i last posted, so let me bore you with the details  and  my ee cummings impression. Sorry about that, I was stuck typing with one hand for a bit. It's good to see your respective progresses. Jim, congrats on the PT discharge. Can I hire you as my trainer? I think I want someone who's gone through this to help me get to the next stage .


Actually, PT concerns are why I decided to post tonight. My PT is still going pretty well. My concern is basically about the role of PT and how that's interpreted by my insurance company. After talking with my PT at the end of my last workout session, he's ready to discharge me -- hopefully not a personality comment :). He says that the purpose of PT is to be able to add new elements into my routines, and that I'm pretty much at the end of what they can offer. My emotional response to that is that I don't feel ready for that yet. Maybe I'm just feeling needy, nerdly, or other thing, but I feel like I still have a LONG way to go before I'm ready to finish PT.


The basic issue is running. We keep getting close to running in the PT sessions, but the PT was very adamant when I broached the issue with him last time that he couldn't do it without my ortho's permission. I don't see him again until July 14. I sort of think I need to be able to run before being finished with PT. In order for me to get back on a tennis court, I need to be able to sprint and really use my quads. The PT says that I'm not going to get more sessions from my insurance company with the progress that I've made. I'm already dropping back to PT sessions every 10-14 days to conserve my remaining sessions.


Have others had similar issues with insurance? How do y'all perceive the purpose of PT in the scheme of your recovery? Were you able to get enough sessions to get you started on the activities that would lead to resumption of normal activities? I'm feeling a bit worried about this and more than a bit frustrated with having to constantly deal with my insurance company, which seems more concerned with getting me back to a functional lifestyle instead of an active one. I'm currently wondering if it's going to be necessary to hire a personal trainer to get me where I need to be before coming back to tennis (and where I'm going to find one with some experience with both QTR and tennis players).


Wanasail, you're beating me on the bike so far. I'm maxing out around 18 miles so far. I may shoot for 20+ if the weather really does dry out in Mass this weekend. I'm interested in your side lunges and wondering about the other one-legged exercises. I'm doing lots of squats and lunges and step-downs, and the stairs are generally feeling okay with only a momentary hitch in the downward motion.


Best wishes folks on getting stronger and getting fitter.

post #1218 of 10802

Hi Garland -

The one-legged exercises are called "Step to balance - forward and sideways" and "Single leg squat".  The STB - forward and the SLS are similar except the free leg is back in the STB and forward in the SLS.  Does that make sense?  The PT said they will strengthen the eccentric contraction of the quad and begin to develop the motion/balance for running.  She won't say how long that will take, only that I'm making progress and it will come in time.  For now - no impact and no standing on my bicycle pedals.


I'm in an HMO plan, so my insurance is different.  Basically, I get whatever care the OS prescribes as long as I use the HMO providers.  At the beginning I decided to pay an additional $500 out of pocket to use the sports medicine instead of the general orthopedics practice.  From my first pre-op visit my medical goal has been a full return to sports, which have been defined around bicycling, sailing and hiking.  The OS and PT (who is also a certified athletic trainer) are part of the same practice and will work with me until I either achieve my goals or they believe I have gone as far as I can.  I know you can't change your insurance, but perhaps you can find a sports medicine/rehab practice that can help you.  If you've got to pay for it, at least go somewhere that they have the training and experience to get you back on the tennis court.  I can't find a link to the article, but the local paper printed a story about a 70+ year old in town who had a total knee replacement and after two years of rehab came back to win a world master's championship in tennis.   Great story.


Good luck making your 20 miles on the bike!    Best! 

post #1219 of 10802

RCM111: Man, so sorry you had double.  I sometime felt my right one was going to give out due to taking the weight from the other knee.


I am at about 10 weeks now. 


I do airline trips (brace gets me upgrades and or first on the plane most of the time) for work.  On my way to Huntsville tomorrow.  Going through DC to minimize time in a Canada Air 700. At 6'3", 295 with a bad knee the seats on that airplane suck and that head in the rear is next to imposible with the knee and my size. I try to get at least a A320 but the 777 and 767 are much better with the bad knee. Take a pain pill to ease the trip due to the bent knee for long periods


Knee gets sore in PM still.  Leg swells a bit and the new smaller brace is an XL because the XXL was too big.  In between size I guess.


PT wants me to stand on a box (I built with 2X4 and plywood) bend bad knee while taking good foot off box and touch good foots toe.  I REALLY do not like that as I am afraid the bad knee will pop forward.  I think I will hit the exercise room at the hotel and do leg lifts and or the bike. 


It is just slow recovery. Stairs still one at a time, holding the rail.  Do not really need the raised toilet seat or bath bench (only used that three times, but it was worth every penny!)


I look on the bright side.  While only wearing one regular sock (have the stocking for swelling on bad leg) I wear out the pair at half the regular rate!



post #1220 of 10802

I have been following this thread for a month and a half with great Interest.


On May 1st I had a full rupture of my Quadricep tendon in my left knee, it happened while mowing my lawn, I slipped on a wet part of the lawn, my right leg slipped out from under me, my left leg was still in stride and folded under my thigh as I hit the ground.


My wife was watching me from the deck and ran down to help me up, I went to put weight on my left leg and there was nothing there and I fell back to the gound in a heap, that was down right terrifying. My wife ran over and got the neighbor and they helped me to my truck and my wife drove me to the Emergency Room.


I had surgery on May13th, followed by 6 weeks of crutches and the brace and just touching my left foot to the floor.


I saw the OS yesterday, I was expecting him to sentence me to a couple more weeks with the brace and crutches then start PT. Instead he says shed the brace for good and and start walking with your crutches, within a week or so you should be able to shed the crutches.....my jaw dropped, I thought he was going to be conservative and take it slow and steady, but he pretty much threw me in the pool and said swim.


The OS said that my left knee is at 90% strength, I asked if I should use a cane after I shed the crutches, he says that it's up to me. He went on to say that he feels I don't need PT, I see him in a month and if my ROM is slow to come back, then he will set me up for PT.


With the tendon being tight and the ROM being limited, at this point I have a hard time believing that it will work its way into shape, but the doc says it will.






post #1221 of 10802
April 1st injury
April 10th Surgery

Hey All,
Hey Rick, welcome! Congratulations on your win ...no brace! That is a good thing as far as I am concerned. I think you are on a fast track.

I went to my OS appointment(mid 11th wk)  in what I call regular cloths w/o brace but took one crutch in just in case he'd be upset and after examining my progress grabbed the crutch and said I would not get it back until the next time I saw him in 6 wks. My daughter enjoyed telling him it was just a prop-that the crutches had been in the car for wks. I only used brace out of the house.

 I just have to say last week while watching golf I teared up (ok cried) and thought I'd never play golf again. And tonight I don't want to go to bed because my knee feels so normal. I was ok'd for strength work outs - the pool-steps I feel free. My pt appointments were interupted and on my own I went from 93 roms to 118 in spite of tremendous stress. I am committed to gaining more rom and hope there is no stat that suggests I won't but right now I am HAPPY!

Hang in there everyone and I truely wish a happy day like this one for you.


post #1222 of 10802

Summary so far:

5/28/08 left quadricep rupture (about 2 inches above knee, so tendon to tendon repair) (age 48)
6/05/08 - Surgery (Dr. ok'd full weight on leg after surgery--immobilizer on 6 wks except for PT)
6/18/08 - Staples removed and PT started (3 x/day at home AND 3 x/week at PT facility)
7/15/08 - No more immobilizer
8/04/08 - 90 ROM
9/30/08 - Full range of motion
December 2008- able to go up AND down stairs without holding rail (slow)

January 2009- tested 70% strength on injured leg on Biodex

Currently - doing my same exercises daily (check my old posts for exercise regimen). 

6/23/09 - Saw Dr. - Biodex test to test leg strength:
Bottom line - Dr. said I could compete again (if I was in a sports team).  However, he asked me if I could do a one leg hop.  Well, I haven't done such a thing for over a year.  I could barely do it.  Then he said he would be surprised if I could it right now.
I don't know if I'm ever supposed to be able to do that or when I would be able to do that.

I would think if you can't do a one leg hop, you certainly can't run or your leg won't be able to help you if you stumble.  Has anyone's doctor mentioned a time table to being able to do a one leg hop?  Or maybe a one leg hop isn't a good idea with a quad rupture.

Here is my Biodex results (a year after surgery and exercises every day).

Isokinetic:  Bilateral:  6 Reps at 210/210 deg/sec
Peak torque / body weight % (Peak TQ/BW)
Extension:  16.4% deficit  (uninvolved leg 44.6%, involved leg 37.3%
Flexion:  3.3% stronger  (uninvolved leg 52.2%, involved leg 53.9%)

Isokinetic:  Bilateral:  10 reps at 300/300 deg/sec
Peak torque / body weight % (Peak TQ/BW)
Extension:  10.9% stronger (uninvolved leg 36.6%, goal 45.0%, involved leg 40.2%)
Flexion:  9.3% deficit (uninvolved leg 50.7%, goal 36.0%, involved leg 46.0%)

Peak torque:  highest muscular force output at any moment during a repetition.  Indicative of a muscle's strength capabilities
Peak TQ/BW:  Represented as a % normalized to bodyweight and compared to an established goal.
Deficits:  1 - 10%  No significant difference between extremities
              11 - 25%  Rehabilitation recommended to improve muscle performance balance.
              > 25%   Significant Functional impairment
             (-) Negative deficit indicates involved extremity performed better than uninvolved.

I don't quite understand how my injured (involved) leg can be stronger in one extension test, yet weaker in the other extension test.  Also the flexion test in one showed the injured leg to be stronger in one flexion test, yet has a deficit in the other.

Kind of confusing!  Anyone else out there want to interpret results?

The only deficit I'm concerned about is the 16.4% deficit - that shows that rehabilitation is still necessary.  The other tests show my injured leg is a little stronger than the non injured leg and/or within the 10% deficit range which means "no significant difference between legs".

At least with the numbers you can actually see your progress. I made sure to get a copy of my test before leaving the doctor's office. 
Stairs - I know IG said he could go up and down stairs after a year, but has to concentrate and can't bound down the stairs like he used to.  Well, join the club!

I find myself having to concentrate when going up and down stairs. I would not dare try to talk or not look at the stairs while doing them.  I know I could easily stumble.  Also, I'm kind of slow on the stairs.  If I can't hop on one leg, how can I bound down the stairs?  Well, right now, I can't and I wouldn't.  Even though my accident didn't happen on stairs, I fear a new accident could easily happen with a stumble trying to go too fast up or down stairs.

So, it looks like I'll be doing my same exercises and also I want to go back to the gym and do more treadmill work at 10 incline--that is the only thing I can't do at home.  I may be looking into buying a treadmill for home use as I could practice walking faster/ maybe even holding rails and trying to jog. 

I may go to the physical therapy office and ask how to go about trying to do one leg hops and any techniques for that beyond what I'm already doing.  I want to stay safe and you know you feel if you do something really quick and fast, like a hop, you might just rip that tendon again.

My doctor said he has NOT see any new quadricep rupture patients in this past year--I'm it!  And this is a busy ortho center, so it just goes to show you how rare this injury is. 

I have a friend that is an ortho doctor in another country.  Here is what he said about quad rupture:
"I am not surprised that it has taken a year, many patients will never get that close to normal leg performance after a major muscle or tendon rupture."
"The surgery only takes an hour or two, but the patient´s part with all the training could easily last a year. Some patients stop when they feel OK during normal activities - going shopping etc. So they never reach the same level as the other limb. "


Good luck to everyone on their recovery.  Sorry to hear about new people, especially bilateral.  However, if you just know up front that it is going to take at least a year to get the strength back and it is going to be hard steady work, then you will be ok.  You can't really speed up the process.  

Edited by CaliforniaQuadPop - 2/27/10 at 4:37pm
post #1223 of 10802
Hi Jeanie, thanks for the kind words, a question.... how is the ROM measured. Is it 0 degrees with the leg fully extended and 90 degrees with it bent under the thigh? I want to get an idea of where I am at with the ROM.

post #1224 of 10802

CalifQuadPop, I agree.  I think I am looking a the better part of a year for full recovery also. 

There is a big difference between moving around and recovery.  Just seems to feel that is what it will take.People at work tell my I am walking great, but that is just what they see.  They are not in this body to know how it feels.

drd, I think I can answer your question.
Yes 0 degrees fully extended, straight, and measures as you raise you leg backwards for ROM.  Your brace should have the degrees on the hinge.  My first brace had pins that you could progressively change to increase ROM.  I would suspect all have that to some degree.  But my brace was straight for about 3-4 weeks and I could not drive for two months.

I am no doctor, but I think the PT was great for getting that tightness out.  The tightness will not go away if you do not stretch the leg and the tightness comes and goes.  I still have some in the mornings.  So I do not understand your DR saying you did not need PT.  Plus the PT progressively intorduced new ways to work on the leg.  Latest I had to build that box and bend knee using involved leg to carry weight, And while standing at the counter, put a chair under my butt in case I loose my grip, and do knee bends.

To all, at 11 weeks after surgry now.  I have notices something.  In my latest trip while changing planes in DC, I really struggled to walk.  I had decided to ditch the cane, but had the smaller brace.  It was like the invloved knee just did not want to work well at all and I ended up for the day popping two percocets every 4 hours to reduce discomfort. Coming down the ladder of the CR200 I even dropped my computer case as I was real unstable walking down that ladder.  This morning it is fine, so the issue seems to come and go.  Perhaps I just really need to be more consistaint with the exercises.


post #1225 of 10802
dbrow16, I never had a hinged brace, only a straight one, I thought my OS was going to put me into one at my last visit, instead he had me ditch the brace and start walking with the crutches.

Ok, then if 0 degrees is fully extended, I can bend my left leg almost straight behind me, I guess that would be close to 45 degrees? When I do bend it, I try to push it past where it starts to tighten up to try and stretch it.

post #1226 of 10802

To RCM111.....WOW and YIKES. My heart goes out to you. One is the worst beyond description when it happens but two at once? Wow. Just be optimistic. YOU WILL FULLY RECOVER. I know. I'm only 20 weeks out and am doing better than ever. Travelling again, just got back from vacation to California where I had ZERO problems, no pain, no stiffness, no "band". Just a little continuing weakness on the stairs. But you will get better. Went to my regular doctor the other day for just "regular" type visit and she's freaked out too about how well I've done. When I got discharged from PT, I thanked my therapist profusely and she said, "don't thank me, thank your parents and grandparents for really good genes" LOL. I never thought of myself as a great physical specimen or anything and believe me, I'm not. But I really did great...and continue to do great...with this. So hang in there everybody. Phillybuster, where r u from? I'm from Mt. Airy and then Plymouth Meeting although I moved to FLA 11 years ago.

post #1227 of 10802
Hi Everyone. Thanks for the very kind words, and the support. It is really helpful to get some perspective on recovery and rehabilitation. I am pretty patient and pretty focused on not letting this get me down. For what it is worth, I think the only difference between one and two legs in a cast is that I can’t get in and out of bed or recliner without help! 

It has been 13 days post surgery, and I am off painkillers as of today.  This of course means I am cranky and uncomfortable. I try and get up and about four times a day and loosen up the other muscles. The surgical wounds start to swell and then throb, which is when I hit the ice packs pretty hard.

Spoke with the PA at the surgeon’s office last week about what to expect, and look forward to getting out of these splints, and into a partially hinged brace. Look forward to getting cleaned up, and getting a chance to move around a bit more. Don’t think I can take two more weeks with the fully extended casts on. Hopefully after those two weeks, I can start some PT, and start to see some progress like many of you have.
post #1228 of 10802
Oh just straight in a brace, I see.  Mine was kept straight for 4-5 weeks.  The brace hinge has a range up to 135 degrees. Yes, 90 is you leg bent with foot pointing back.  You get the foot up on your hamstring and your in the 120 range.

Well, listen to your OP.  If he says no PT, that is his and your call. At 10 weeks mine still tightens up so I still do knee bends and am still trying to build up the quad but have not been on any weights yet.  I go back for third PT on 7/3.

I am now back to some yard work, layed down Scotts on the lawn today.  Worked on pulling out an old fence with the wife, but had to break after 1/2 hour.  Was down on the knees with sawsall to saw off some posts.  Was a trick getting back up to standing, had to use a chair.

BTW, if I have not said it enough, two hours from Huntsville to Dulles in that Canada Air CR200 in row 9 seat F really sucked.  Finished the connection in exit row 10 seat D on an A320 with feet of room for my legs!  I know what row to ask for now!
Edited by dbrow16 - 6/28/2009 at 11:41 am GMT
post #1229 of 10802
Heck, I needed help in and out of recliner or bed for a while with just my left one in the brace. Just be careful on the recliner.  I had the footrest drop once when I was trying to bring up the back.  It was a week or so after surgry and having the leg just hanging there for 10 seconds was not fun.

I found it useful to flex and rotate the feet as the tendons in the instep got real tight, because you cannot do too much for the first few weeks. Also, if they did not give you the hose to prevent blood clots, get a pair as they really do help on swelling.  I still use it on the involved leg. Medical supply businesses should have them.

The bath bench worked great as it was good to get a shower rather than a sponge bath.  The removable shower heads on an extended  hose are a must.  It was after my first visit with the OP that he told me it was OK to shower.  Bench rather than chair as you sit on the outside and scoot over while someone lifts the legs.

If you do laptop work, there is a My Place Workstation (costs $30 at Bed Bath and Beyond) and with wifi your back on line in bed.
Edited by dbrow16 - 6/29/2009 at 02:38 am GMT
Edited by dbrow16 - 6/29/2009 at 02:38 am GMT
post #1230 of 10802
Thanks for the great tips dbrow16.   I will have to try them all! 
New Posts  All Forums:Forum Nav:
EpicSki › The Barking Bear Forums › Ski Training and Pro Forums › Fitness, Health, Nutrition, Injury, and Recovery › Quadriceps Tendon Rupture, Repair and Rehab