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Quadriceps Tendon Rupture, Repair and Rehab - Page 42

post #1231 of 10806
April 1 injury
April 10, 2009 surgery

Hey drdrews1- I am out of town and took a quick read of last posts. My PT has a measuring gadget that he uses to measure how far I can bend my knee toward thigh as I am laying on my back.

I am traveling and driving a standard shift car! My injured right leg- foot is a big swollen this am
and it looks funny ...had to drive in traffic for awhile so I probably over did it a bit.

I don't know if this is related but I sleep on my side with my knee(s) bent and in the am
I am just not as stiff as when kept straight and really careful w/o brace. I shift around a bit but I think it has been a good thing as far as my knee goes. Still feels lose during day. Steps are weird and I am going down sideways sometimes. With no quad muscle workouts yet this is probably the first steps to gaining some muscles. catch ya'all later I gotta check out!
post #1232 of 10806

I am walking around now without a crutch or cane, no pain just tightness around my left knee, I have a slight limp, that should go away over time.

I can bend my lower left leg to about an inch or so short of parallel to the floor. I have been stuck at that range for the last 4 days or so. I am to assume that over time it will loosen up to allow my ROM to go further. If it doesn't then I will have my OS set me up for some PT.

At the end of the day the lower part of my left leg and foot get swollen, after a nights sleep everything is OK. Also during the day I usually sit for about 45 minutes do some reading and put an Ice pack on my knee.

My truck is a stick shift, I haven't tried driving it yet, I want to gain more strength in my left leg before I try working the clutch.

post #1233 of 10806
Hi All,

I have not posted in a while.  I had my surgery on April 7th, so I am now 12 weeks post op. 
Welcome to all you new folks, sorry you have to join us here but this really is a great place to learn about our injuries and get some support from people who do understand. 

I have been in PT for just about two months and out of my brace for one month.  The day after surgery, my OS had me bending my leg to a 60 degree angle three times each day.  Then at one month post surgery he sent me to PT and opened my brace up to 60 degrees all the time, so that I had some flex when I walked.  When I started PT, my ROM was measured at 90 degrees and now I am about 120 degrees.  It seems that ROM was increased rapidly once they began stretching my quad by having me lay on my belly and bending the leg back.  Ok, I am sharing all of this because the other night at PT, there was another patient who also has a quad tendon repair and while they were stretching him in this fashion, he was grunting and yelling loudly.  It was painful to listen to, I think everyone in there felt so bad for him.  So his story is that his OS had his leg in locked extension for six weeks and then only allowed very slow ROM increases, now he has scar tissue build up and his ROM is not very good even though he is like 6 months post op.  I am curious about why an OS would issue this type of protocol.  Has anyone else had a similar protocol or similar problems with scar tissue?

At this point in my treatment, my biggest struggle is steps and this is what I am working on.  My PT now has me doing active "Russian" stim to help build other parts of my quad.  Has anyone else done this and if so has it been effective?  It sounds like I am being released from PT after next week and I am just curious about how to continue building my knee up so that I can do steps like a big girl instead of how my two year old climbs steps. 

Thanks to all!

post #1234 of 10806

Hi Graceella -
I've also cut way back on the posting that I do.  It's good to hear from you and others from our "class."   Many are graduating, which is really good to see.  I know we all wish noone else would suffer this injury, but at least they find their way here where there is support and information.

I did a search of the medical literature a couple of months ago.  The papers reflect that there are two schools of thought regarding immobilization.   Some doctors have their patients begin moving the knee almost immediately after surgery and rapidly progress to ROM exercises. This is the approach that you and I both had.  The other is to keep the knee immobile for 6 weeks and then begin ROM and other exercises.  I believe this is the approach that Floridaguy had.   According to the literature, the long term outcome is the same.  Go figure!


I'm about six weeks ahead of you - my surgery was on Feb. 24.  I'm at full ROM, riding my bicycle 20+ miles up and down hills, sailing and doing steps up and down with alternate legs and without using the railing.  I had a PT appointment today and will be in PT for some time until I can run, jump, hop on one foot and anything else you can think of.  The PT told me to expect slow but steady progress and won't/can't say when I'll be discharged from the program.  Honestly, I'm not complaining since I know I can't finish this on my own.  Garland posted a while ago with much the same concern - being discharged from PT before he felt he was fully recovered.  I don't know the answer - you may need to seek out a PT or qualified athletic trainer on your own to work with until you feel you have reached where you need to be.

According to the literature, 90+% of patients consider their treatment to be successful and return to their jobs and "normal" activities.  Only about 50% return to their pre-injury athletics.  The author of the paper speculates that the problem isn't physical, but rather they never fully complete rehab.   I'm guessing that many insurance companies consider the return to normal activities as an end-point and don't want to pay for the additional months it takes to fully recover to pre-injury athletic performance.  Just a guess, but it seems consistent with what people are sharing on this forum. 

Best of luck and best wishes to the newcomers! 

post #1235 of 10806
18 days post injury
17 days post surgery
First doctor visit today post surgery. Removed the casts, got cleaned up (which felt terrific), and had the staples removed.
Dr. asks me to lift my legs, and got just a shiver. Asks me to flex the quad, and again, just a shiver. I asked if he expected me to be able to do it, and he said “No. Never seen it happen. This is the start. Keep trying, and when you get the strength to do it, we start the PT.”
Was surprised that the scars were only about 5 inches long. I asked about the rupture, and he said that it was a full tear on both sides and it looked like hamburger. However, they were easy to grab and re-attach, and that they would eventually be as good as new. I was also told that this is where being a good sized guy with good musculature helps. The surrounding muscles do the heavy work while the quad heals and catches up. Which would explain some of the other earlier posts about people finding outer and inner thigh discomfort. 
I was weight bearing since day 3, and doctor told me to keep moving with the braces. He also indicated that the walking got us past the risk of blood clots, and that the swelling is really quite mild as a result. That is easy for him to say. After every jaunt, I had to endure the swelling and hit the ice pretty hard.
The PA helped show me some ways to do some passive movement and some flexing techniques, and how to deal with the braces. Up to 20 degrees flex when I am in bed, and I can loosen the braces as well. Still require full extension while I am walking.  I know some of you lucky dogs get more flex early on, but it is really apparent that every injury is different.  I think that my doctor is taking a more moderate approach. My sympathies for anyone immobilized for six weeks.  I am thankful for the small progress and the promise for more in the near future. 

So it looks like two more weeks of needing help in and out of but, but at least I get to take a shower, and I have something to work on. 
post #1236 of 10806

Hey Wanasail, I was at PT tonight and they said I should only come one more time and it is because of the insurance.  Pre injury I was not doing the intense athletics that a lot of you were.  I am hoping to be able to jog again in the future but that is not going to happen now.  My PT did say she is going to recommend to my OS that he give me a script to get a tens unit so that I can continue doing my active stim.  She said that and some other weight training is what will get me to where I want to be, so I guess as long as I keep active on my own, eventually I will get there.  I think that I have full ROM at this time, I feel great for the most part, just can't do all I want to do.  I think I might have read some of the same info that you found online about the different PT protocols.  I sure am glad that my OS was more aggressive in my recovery because I would not want to endure what I saw that other person going through last week with the pain from trying to strech through the scar tissue.  How are you still in PT?  Is your insurance still paying or are you doing this on your own?  I am saving a few PT sessions so that I can go back occasionally to check in with my PT, that was her recommendation. 


RCM, it sounds like you will be making some good progress.  I had to have my brace locked when walking for four weeks, and I had a broken right ankle at the same time I was going through this nonsence with the knee, so I feel your frustration about needing so much help to get around.  I am blessed with a great husband who waited on me hand and foot for a long time and did all of the caring for my young kids.  If you have a good support and can rest as much as possible you are probably better off.  My OS also had me taking one aspirin every day to help avoid the risk of a blood clot but I was also weight bearing the day after surgery since I could not bear weight on my other ankle so that too helped prevent the blood clots.


Wanasail, you have given so much good advice since I have been on here, I am really grateful to you and all who helped me through this.  It is amazing that the worst of it all is behind me and I am so grateful, now if I could just run...

post #1237 of 10806
Insurance can be a big hinderance in recovery here - my plan only had 20 sessions ( and they counted the 2 times I saw PT when in the hospital ).    Everything will come in time and yes stairs are the longest part of it - I think a lot of it is mental.

I'm 16 months out from surgery and doing just about everything I want to be doing easily.  I know I need to build up more strength but am lazy about PT.  I most of the time I can do the stairs quickly but I use caution when carrying things.   My 3 boys keep me busy so I get a lot of stair work done since one is always yelling out for me the moment I get up the stairs ( or at least it seems this way ).  Steep inclines are not so bad now - I do not feel the need to baby step down the driveway like I used to - so now I can walk past the scene  of the fall without cringing.  But I'm still going to avoid that in the winter time.

Waiting for PA weather to warm up again to get back in the pool - I try to lots of running in it.  I'm using the treadmill 3 days a week.  Football for the 11yr old starts up at the end of the month and I use practice time to get additional hill walking in.  Now I'm trying make myself do more of the PT excerises when the other two are playing in the tub.

So for now I'm just plodding along and wish everyone else a speeding recovery.

post #1238 of 10806
Hey Graceella,  I can’t imagine doing this with a broken ankle as well! I hope that means that you exercised all of your bad luck at once. I know what you mean about having a good spouse. My wife is really keeping it all together. We also have 8, 6, and 4 year olds, and when I am back in action, I will really owe her. 
Two days after going to braces, I can feel my knees and quads again. Even though they feel terrible, I will take it. Did six sets of flexes today, and even got in and out of my chair by myself for the first time! Even though the braces are locked, there is a bit of flex in the them, so I also get a tiny bit of knee movement when I walk.  The right leg is a bit more wobbly than the left. Curious as to how that will affect future PT. 
I also got to enjoy a few moments of normalcy today!  I walked out on the deck today and had lunch with my family. Then I sat there and had a cold beer and chatted with my wife while the kids picked raspberries and blueberries for dessert. For about 45 minutes, it was like any normal summer afternoon. 
The swelling is definitely going away with a bit more hobbling around with the walker. Just one round of ice today.
post #1239 of 10806
Its July Fourth and happy holiday to everyone. Just got back from the beach. Great day. Graceella, as I mentioned to you in an earlier post, we're up at the Jersey shore for a few weeks. Found your recent post very interesting about the two different schools of thought concerning immediate post operative protocols. Wannasail is completely correct when he says that I had the more conservative approach. I was totally one hundred percent immobilized. Except it was for 9 weeks as opposed to six. If we can vote, I'm voting for that approach. I did not get out of bed for 9 weeks...well not literally, but it felt that way. But I'll tell you one thing. ZERO weight bearinbg for nine weeks. Zero flexion..not one little bit for nine weeks.My mental health was questionable from being inside so long...LOL...but I'm voting for that appraoch. My first few times at PT were like the guy you describe, Graceela, screaming. But it was right in the long run. Today, I'm 100%, feeling great...no problems anywhere in any situiation. My friends from up here were saying, Jeff, I though you had some terrible injury that I'd heard about. Lets see your scar..(I was in a bathing suit),...I don't see anything much and you're walking great, etc. They should only have seen me back in Feb and March!
post #1240 of 10806
4.75 mos Post-Op

Howdy folks,

Happy July 4 if you're in the US.

I haven't posted in a bit, though that seems to be the course record for the forum once the writers hit a certain point in the recovery. I've still been reading when I can, but time gets precious with my kids and then the rehab stuff during the summer. Finally, we had a nice day here in MA. It was to die for, and the friend I was biking with seemed headed in that direction for a while. He was making lots of comments about being helped along by a cripple, but we did get him back to his car -- okay, I left him parked at a coffee shop and rode back to get his car. First time I've been scared of a friend having a heart attack on me. I'll have to check in with him again tonight to make sure he's okay. Kinda scary knowing I had to rely on the still healing knee to get him settled in somewhere. Also unsettling to think of myself as the "healthy" one for a bit.

Graceella, glad to hear that you're finishing up PT -- or at least the first round ... I'm still struggling with how to talk to my insurance company about it. In the end, I've decided to wait until the mid-July round of doctor visits. I see my OS in 10 days and my primary care the week after that. I know that both of them are supportive of my desire to play tennis again -- they're both tennis players, and I hear my primary care thinks this may give him an edge on me ... I feel like I still need more help to get to the point where I can run and sprint again. I've never been a huge jogger. Okay, strike that even if you've never seen me run. I am a big guy (6'2" 235 now but I was 253 when the injury happened), so I guess I have been a huge jogger. My goal coming back isn't to jog again but to be able to run to play tennis. Still, I know that I need to run on a treadmill before I can think about a hard court or especially clay courts. Getting my insurance company to accept the notion that they'll pay out less over the long run if I have a fully active lifestyle seems to be the stumbling block. My primary care even suggested that I may need to change to a different PT practice to get the kind of trainer I need for the next step.

In terms of the rehab/recovery procedure, I think my OS went with a sort of middle of the road approach. He was very conservative with letting me do things. I was at full extension for 4 weeks and had incremental increases in ROM every two weeks after that. I went 0, 30, 40, 70, 90, then no more brace. My ROM pretty steadily up through about 110 degrees. Now, I'm a bit past 120, and it's still coming along. I think that I'll eventually get it all back, but I'm finding it harder to regain ROM than strength. My PT never really did the forceful stretching that a lot of y'all describe because I stayed ahead of the OS's prescribed limits all along the way. I sort of wish we could have pushed that just a bit harder, but I know the OS subscribes to the slow and steady protocol.

It's nice to read how everyone is coming along. Keep on plugging or squatting or lunging or leg raising or whatever it is that's working for you.
post #1241 of 10806
Well, it sounds like we have had all kinds of protocols here.  I am happy with the way my OS did things, my strength to do most functional things came back quickly and while I am happy to have progressed enough to be done with PT, I mentally don't feel ready to be done.  My plan is to get back to my gym and talk to some personal trainers that have experience or knowledge of working with this injury.  Unless of course I can talk my OS into prescribing more PT when I see him next week. 
Florida Guy you sound like you have lucked out in the scar department.  I have a nasty scar, because I am one of the lucky people who develop keloid scars.  Basically the scar is this red raised line which my three year old tells me looks like a worm, nice huh?  My OS said he could send me to a plastic surgeon but I have read mixed reviews on whether or not that works and may just be unnecessary pain, so we'll see.  I am not overly worried about it, after what this injury has done to me the scar is the least of my problems. 
I have been doing some working out in the pool the past few days and my knee has never felt better!  I am thinking that moving forward that is something that I definitly have to include in my therapy. 
Well, happy Fourth to you all, I hope you all saw some great fireworks!
Florida Guy, I hope you are enjoying the "Shore" I really love it there.  My husband and I are hoping to buy a condo there in the next two years.  Sea Isle City is our preference, but we would do anywhere just to get our foot in the door down there. 

Continued speedy healing to everyone!

post #1242 of 10806
This is a fund-raising pitch, so if you're not interested please just read-on.  I'm committed - I'm going to do the full 50 mile ride for the local Boys & Girls Club in two weeks on July 18 - 5 months post-op.  I did 30 very hilly miles today and will do 40-50 next week to complete this stage of my training.  My goal is to beat 3 hours, half-way to my goal of a personal record 6 hour century ride (100 miles) this fall.   My website for the ride is www.bike4bgc.com/view_rider_profile/?id=155  As an added incentive, you'll get to see my real name and a picture taken 18 months ago on the slope of Mont Ventoux, the penultimate killer stage of this year's Tour de France!

It's really great to see so many achieving their goals and moving past the early days of surgery and rehab.  Best to all. 
post #1243 of 10806
April 1st 2009 injury
April 10th 2009 operation
12 wks post op

Hey All, 

Thanks for all your sharing! I am starting to get the insurance conversation that once you are considered "functional" (equated to a certain rom) you are considered good to go...on your own.
Negotiating steps with confidence is part of a functioning life style in my book! 

I was traveling and just got home. I had a break from PT and will go back to give him my doc's orders and plan the next phase of strength training but I am thinking of going to more of a sports orientated facility.
Also, I thought it would be interesting to see what those vibrating machines have to offer. You stand on them and the vibrations cause you to have to balance
while doing excercises - like squats but I don't think they have to be deep to get results and it 
is supposed to be easier on your body. I believe just standing on them is a good work out.
I located one I might have access to in Dallas but have to go out of town again so I will check on it next week and keep you posted. I heard the Dallas Cowboys use one for re-hab. I just think it might be great for step conditioning.

My daughter's boyfriend said he heard a top athelete needed 1 year to recover from this so, if it
takes me a year and a half that would still be good. lol 

Take care Quad-Buddies!
post #1244 of 10806
June 14th injury
June 15th surgery
3 weeks post op
Thanks JeeKNEE. I have heard it explained in a similar fashion;  
The insurance companies view their obligation to their customers as paying for procedures that provide an “acceptable” result. As patients, we feel that our premiums entitle us to “optimal” results, and our view of what is even acceptable can be different than what the insurance company believes. If the differences are great, it can be a real drag for the patient.
Take a runny nose for example. There is really no difference between acceptable and optimal.  The physician prescribes medicine, and the nose stops running. The outcome is viewed by the insurance company and the patient as both acceptable and optimal. There is no conflict.
Now consider a QTR or BQTR. The insurance company may feel that an acceptable result is that you are simply returned to a specific range of motion. Meanwhile the patient may feel that running up a flight of stairs is the basic level of acceptable care, with an optimal result being able to run a marathon, or bike a century.  The difference between definitions of what is “acceptable” are so great, there is bound to be a point where the insurance company declines treatment and the patient is on their own before they are whole again.
Based on what some folks here have said about their PT giving them the “bum’s rush”, I am going to have a candid conversation with my new PT early on about what they view as acceptable. If their answer isn’t quite right, I may look elsewhere for care.  
post #1245 of 10806
Hi JeeKNEE -
My PT practice doesn't use the electronic gadgets.  Here are some of the balance exercises they use.  Make sure to have something handy to grab onto - they are tougher than they seem.

Do each until you can do multiple sets, holding your balance for 20 seconds, then go onto the next.  It took me a couple of weeks:
- Stand on one leg - alternate legs.
- Stand on surgical leg on a rolled up towel
- Stand on surgical leg on a rolled up towel and cross arms with hands on shoulders
- Stand on surgical leg on a rolled up towel, cross- arms with hands on shoulders and rotate your head side-to-side a full 180 degrees.

The latest is she had me make a balance platform.  It's a board that I can stand on with my feet at shoulder width with a 1" block running down the center.  She has a fancy one, I made one out of scrap lumber I found in the garage.  Exercise is to do squats without either end of the board touching the floor.  

post #1246 of 10806
post #1247 of 10806
Hey all,

I had my last PT session this evening!  My ROM is 125

Steps will continue to be a challenge for me, but I will have to tackle that on my own, I am up for the challenge though.  I hope everyone is doing well, healing nicely etc...

post #1248 of 10806

25 days post surgery

Hey Tigger44,


I have been reading some of your older posts.  Thanks for all the encouragement. 


Did your numbness go away?  Anyone else have some numbness?


I am opening up the braces, flexing my quad, and stretching the quads, hamstring and calve muscles.  Also trying to keep the hips and back loose. I can bend my knees to the 20 degree limit, and I am perhaps about 7 days from my goal of lifting my leg off the bed.

I also do some light massage, and the backsides of my legs are numb in places.  What a weird feeling.


post #1249 of 10806
Hello all,

It's been a while since I've had time to post, but wanted to update everyone.  I had my right leg QTR surgery Feb 13 and have just about reach the six month mark.  I have full ROM after working with a good PT, and am doing just about everything I did preinjury.  The only exception is regular running, which I've done some but not as much.  I did yoga last weekend and was actually able to touch heel to butt after some warm up.  I still don't have the right leg as well developed as the healthy left leg, but I've started to do full squats with light weight and anticipate this will help alot.  Also continue to do leg extensions with ROM limited to final 30 degrees or so to isolate the VMO.  I'm hoping all are doing well in their programs.  Just remember, this is likely a 6-12 month process, so keep up the stretching, PT, regular exercise and don't get discouraged.

Best to all.
post #1250 of 10806

6 Months Post Op - Rgt Leg QTR

Incident Jan 9 - Surgery Jan 11

Good Morning All,

WOW - hard to believe six months has gone by  - a bit of a blur it is.

Leg/knee remains swollen, stiff and numb. Thanks for asking Rcm111 -  the numbness is now limited to the outside of my knee, to the right of the scar. From my knee up & down a couple inches each way. On occasion the numbness continues down the leg a bit further.  Rather odd. I trust this is an indication it will soon be gone but I am told to expect the numbness for up to a year or more. This is also where the stiffness remains dominant, down the outside of my leg. The patella remains sensitive to touch and sore.  Sheets resting on it remains sensitive. Can't wait to wake up some day and discover I have a semi normal leg again as sleep remains uncomfortable.  Soon, I trust!

The great news is my "pushed" ROM measured at 122* this week vs. 112*  6 weeks ago. I only ask for a measurement every 6 weeks to avoid that "is that all" feeling. 10* in 6 weeks - slow but a least positive movement. My goal is 135* or so - which appears to be approx. what my left leg ROM is. The unfortunate part is my cooled down ROM remains just over 90*, but it will come!!?? Right? Have to believe it will! It's very frustrating when you hang your leg and it stops bending at around 90* ! I keep lowering the seat on the stationary bike to bend it further, which is working, but this of course makes it swell to a watermelon instead of the usual grapefruit! We also bend like crazy at PT which I still do every 4 days or so plus the Club and pool. I can now walk without a limp which is great! Will be bounding up & down the stairs and kicking a soccer ball with my team in no time! Yeah, right.

Great to hear from you J. Would be great to hear from  all our other mortals out there. How are you all doing? Don't get discouraged when maybe you're not doing as well as others on here - I know I did. We all have our own time frame, different injuries, different repairs and other issues.

Have a great summer and keep at it. It will come!


post #1251 of 10806
Hi guys and gals,

I hope that everyone is coming along at their own rates and generally feeling happy.

I have my 5 month update visit with the OS on Tuesday and am looking forward to asking two months worth of questions and generally bugging him a bit :).

Jakster, it's nice to hear an update -- esp. from someone who had surgery on the same day that I did.

RCM111 -- I think numbness is pretty universal after this surgery. I still find the sensation (or lack thereof) on the outside of my knee exceedingly strange (and kind of annoying) at times. I'm hoping that sensation comes back, but I'm not too optimistic about that happening. My OS was fairly blunt and suggested that a little loss of sensation was a fair trade for a functioning knee. I guess I agree with that in principle, but I think it's easier to say that about someone else's knee than your own. My numbness is about the size of an old-style silver dollar on the outside of my knee. I can feel it when my youngest boy pulls on the hairs, though.

Tigger -- interesting comment about the sensitivity. I don't have the sheet sensitivity any longer, but I have vivid memories of the first nights without the brace when I did. My biggest regret is that I can't really put pressure on the knee. We have an 11 month old who's crawling now. I can't get down in the floor to crawl around with him like I want to. It definitely hurts when I put direct pressure like that on the knee. I think I'd be out of look if I had a job that required me to be on my knees -- like flooring installation.

Tonight is nice. I have tired quads and no knee pain after cycling for the past two days. I love the way my legs feel after a good bike ride. I especially love that feeling this year!
post #1252 of 10806
Injury: April 9  Surgery: April 10

Well, I am at the three month mark, doing fairly well.

I still get leg swelling but there is no real numbness.

My range of motion is basically normal, but the leg is still tight when I move it to the rear.

Knee aches, but I now use a Donjoy smaller neoprene brace, and it seems better in that brace. Without the brace most often feels like someone is poking a nail in the sides of knee, dull ache sort of feeling.

I do the stationary bike bike twice a week at the rec center doing about 4 to 6 miles, really good on keeping things limber.  I do leg lifts on the thing where you lie back at 45 degrees, push up with feet and the thing slides up.  I do about 7-8 with the only the involved left leg doing the lifting, holding for about 20 seconds and then slowly lowering to push up again.  I built a box of 2X4 covered with 3/4 inch plywood.  I stand on it, lift the good leg, bend the bad knee to touch the toe of the good leg foot to the floor.  That is tough as basically the involved leg is holding my full weight (I am 6'3" and about 290 lbs).  I can do about three of those.  all of these are at the suggestion of the PT, and they are improving things.

I can pretty well do a straight leg lift, but it aches a bit to do that.  I can hold for 20 seconds or so.  But it is not nearly as easy a lift as with the good right leg.
post #1253 of 10806
Tiger: Have you thought about getting a second or third opinion? Before my second surgery to  break up/clean out the scar tissue to get my knee bending and loosened up, my OS told me there is a risk of damaging the articular cartilage surfaces in my knee/knee cap from it being so tight. He stated that the 5 months we waited to see if I could get my ROM back was longer than we should have waited. 

Edited by in2falling - 7/12/2009 at 11:36 pm GMT
post #1254 of 10806

In2falling - thanks regarding a second or third opinion - yes, I am concerned. Our well being is in the hands of our health team. I believe I have a good team but I guess at some point, if things don't loosen up, I need to act. The concern of course is will it be too late at that point as scar tissue becomes very, very strong?

The MRI that was done a couple of months ago apparently didn't show scar tissue as a cause for concern. If not scar tissue, then what is causing the tightness and limiting my ROM? Is my tendon simply less pliable then others? Maybe in the long term this is a positive? A tighter knee maybe? I remain concerned. The advice I have been given is to keep working it and it will loosen up. We shall see.

I see my OS again in a couple weeks and will continue the push for answers and a plan to assure myself the best possible outcome.

Great to hear you continue to improve. Good luck to all with your respective rehabs.  


post #1255 of 10806
Hey Jakster, I am interested in learning more about the strengthing of the VMO.   Years ago when I was running a lot, I had significant problems with my vmo in both legs and was in PT back then.  Now that I have been officially released from PT and by my OS, I need to be doing my strengh training on my own.  I am hoping to focus on not only building the quad but also strengthing the VMO.  So can you give some details about what all you are doing?

Thanks, Susan
post #1256 of 10806
5 months + 1 Day Post-Surgery

Hey y'all,

Well, I'm officially discharged as a patient of my OS as of this afternoon. He's happy with his work and promises a good recovery -- one of these days. He said that movement looks good and that I still need to gain a bit more muscle mass back. I also have permission to start working on the impact exercises like running with an eye to starting to hit tennis balls again around Labor Day.

One of the odder bits about the session today was seeing my knee X-rays from before and after. The left (injured) patella is now about 3/4" lower than my right knee cap. The alignment on the knee was good, though I think would already know if it weren't as cycling would reveal the misalignment pretty quickly with pain.

Edited by garland - 7/15/2009 at 02:18 am GMT
post #1257 of 10806
Tiger: The research on fibrosis/scar tissue I did when I was freaked out about my knee, was that scar tissue matures (hardens/turn into fiboris tissue) after about 4 months and that most doctors if they are going to go in and clean/break it up do it around that time 4 month mark or sometimes earlier. My OS never did a MRI and we both knew that I had excess scar tissue after about week 8/12 when my knee was still hot, swollen, had tissue bogginess and ROM was limited when it should not have been. As for a tight knee? You do not want a tight knee cap, you want your knee cap to be loose and mobile is what my OS explained to me, other wise you run the risk of wearing/damaging the cartilage surfaces of your knee cap and the cartilage surfaces of the grove the knee cap rides in. Hang in there and I hope things get better for you, I know the frustrations you are going through because I have been there myself. 

On another note, its been 1 year and 3 months now and thing are getting quite a bit better over this last month. Tested the knee out the other day and did some short sprinting and jumping and it felt great and may start playing some light basketball again here soon.

Also finally starting to get some good muscle development on my inner quads and leg(s) have gotten quite a bit stronger. Outer quads are almost the same size as my other good/bad leg. Last leg workout I made it up to 4 plates on the squat machine 400+ lbs for a set of 10 reps (course these are much easier than normal free bar squats) and able to get 25 reps on leg press with 450 lbs 5 plates. Still not able to do normal free bar squats without pain in patellar tendon last time i tried but hopeful will some day will be able to do them again.

Still get occasional stiffness in the repair site but have days when the knee feels great and almost completely normal. Overall I am happy with the progress I have made over the last few months and that things continue to improve, course this has taken quite a bit of consistent hard work on my part to get to this point.

Best Wishes and Happy Rehabbing Everyone!!
post #1258 of 10806

31 days post surgery


Hope everyone keeps making progress.  I realize that this recovery is thousands of baby steps.

But some of these baby steps are milestones for me!  It has been a good week. 


- did two leg lifts with both legs off of the recliner yesterday.  Woo Hoo! It hurt, but it was gratifying.  Can do it with and without the braces. Did it yesterday and today.
- Increased my mobility around the house.  I can get in and out of the recliner by myself, and I walked around more than ever.  Up to about 200 yards a day.  
- The big one;  took my first shower today!  Also gratifying on a whole bunch of levels. 

I know the last one sounds kind of wimpy, but I am a Bi-lateral QTR.  Finally feel stable enough with "no legs" to step over the threshold of the shower, get in a plastic chair, and take the braces off and go to my happy place for a few moments.  


post #1259 of 10806

I hear ya with the shower.  I was unable to shower either for about 5 weeks because I had the QTR on my left leg and broken right ankle.  Not allowed to put any weight on my ankle and my knee buckled constantly when I took off the brace.  I was so darn tired of washing myself at the kitchen sink.  Congrats on your progress, while going through it things seem slow but in hindsight it is amazing how quickly you can get back on your feet if you follow your PT regimen.  Good luck with your continued recovery.

post #1260 of 10806

Hey Gaceella,


I am with you.  Having a little complication really does make a difference.  At least I am weight bearing on both legs, which gives a little stability.  I am sure you were attached to your walker for a while and not the fastest person in the house. 

We were at the kitchen sink as well, and last week, my wife told me to meet her in the courtyard, where she was waiting with a bucket of warm water, soap, towels, a chair and a hose. Moved the chair into the shower this week, now that I can get get over the step.

I had my 4 week appointment yesterday, and got the go ahead to go 50 degrees in the braces.  OS was pleased and told us that we would start with PT in two weeks.  When he said drive in about 3 weeks, my wife laughed.  Doc said no really, this will continue to improve steadily when you follow the program.   So you are the second person in two days to say that, and I appreciate the encouragment.  

OS also said this first period could be worse; what if you had both arms in casts for a month.  As bad as this has been, he is right.  That would be worse!


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