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Quadriceps Tendon Rupture, Repair and Rehab - Page 9

post #241 of 10797

13 weeks post-surgery

Mahalo gents,

VtS, I will call. Congrats on finally being allowed PT, even if it is just you doing it. As you know, I encourage that regimen, and will be happy to share tips.

PB - You will probably never have matching knees, unless you do the same thing to the other knee. But just for reference, I'm looking down at my knees now (I can wear shorts to work), and they're very close to being a matched pair. So after 3-4 months, unless you still have inordinate swelling, what you see is not far from what you're going to get.

My OS ultimately admitted that after 6 weeks, the surgical repair is pretty much healed. So there's really not much you could do to damage the repair at that point that wouldn't damage a healthy knee.

TB - again, for reference, I was driving my 5-speed stick shift less than two weeks after surgery. The driving part was easy (seat all the way back, brace at 30) - it was getting in and out that was tough. But if you're careful, you get good at it - it's like mastering a puzzle. And it does stand to reason that you might risk physical injury if you get in an accident. But isn't that always the case?

Keep it up, boys. Work as hard as you can handle, and the results will pay off big in terms of getting your life back. That's far and away the most thing.
post #242 of 10797
hello everyone, hope you guys are getting better and getting back to the game of life. I got one more week before my surgery may 15. I have a question, if it takes 6 weeks to heal does that mean 6 weeks of not getting up and no PT. how much time were you in bed before you started to get up and move around..also how long do you stay in immobilizer, and how long before they put brace and how long do you have to wear brace. thanks for any info
post #243 of 10797

3 weeks post op

3 weeks post op and 3 week 4 days since injury and man its amazing how quickly muscle atrophy. Finally hit 60 PROM yesterday and was completely wiped out from work and rehab the last two days, but got a good 10 hours sleep last night and feel much better this morning.

Had the wife pick up some adjustable 10lb ankle weights yesterday that I will be using to push the PROM while sitting on the living room table. Also will be using them here is a few weeks to build muscle back.

Found a way to do leg lifts that does not hurt to much, starting them about 6 inches off a pillow, its the first 6 inches that causes pain.

VermontSoldier: Congrads on graduating, have fun flying those gliders this summer.

PhillyBuster: Great job on getting the leg up on those leg lifts, keep cranking them out!! Think the new type of surgery your PT was talking about is using relaxing suture.
post #244 of 10797

11 Weeks Post-Surgery

Hello gents,

Tiger Bait - You are moving fast! You plan to walk unassisted - no brace, no walker, no crutches, no cane - AND ascend a flight of stairs by May 16? That's a mighty big guantlet you're flinging at me! According to my PT, I am probably at least a month away from walking unassisted. I'm still on crutches. She says a cane comes next. But I'll try to do the stairs, using the handrail. I've been doing an exercise of stepping up and down from a 4-inch platform for a week now and am getting good at it. Hey, and I finally hit (and exceeded) 90 degrees ROM today (got to 95 degrees). A week behind my goal, but I'm happy.

DaveValo - Welcome to gang! Every stage of your recovery sounds identical to mine so far, except that i had surgery the day after my injury. I was immobilized in a full-length leg brace until week 7. On my first day of PT, my ROM was only 20 degrees. That was 4 weeks ago. Today I reached 95 degrees.

train buff - I was in a full-length leg brace in a locked position with no flexing for six weeks until I began PT. During weeks 1 and 2 of PT, my brace was opened to allow up to 45 degrees of flexing (even though my ROM on the first day of PT was only degrees). During weeks 3 and 4 of PT, the brace was opened further to allow up to 90 degrees of flexing (even though my ROM was stuck at 75 degrees during both these weeks). At the end of week 4 of PT, the brace was removed altogether. I am told to keep it off unless I go out in a crowd where there is a danger of being pushed and shoved. The first 3 weeks post-surgery were the toughest. I spent almost all of the time in bed, except to get up and fix simple meals in the kitchen or wash myself, etc. in the bathroom. No stairs involved for these daily tasks, fortunately. I was totally dependent on others for those three weeks to bring in groceries, do the laundry and change my bedsheets. After three weeks, my recovery turned a corner and I went to a concert (using a wheelchair - I was still unable to walk much distance on crutches yet). Until that point, I didn't have much energy to leave the house for anything. After four weeks, I began to go out every afternoon for short walks on my crutches. Three blocks took about 30 minutes, but eventually I started moving faster. Going out for these short walks every day has been an important part of recovering my physical strength - and I always feel better generally, more energized with a positive attitude, afterward.

Has anyone in the forum had this new method of QTR surgery that goes around the knee, allowing a 55 degree ROM immediately after surgery?


post #245 of 10797

1st day PT

Hey Guys,

Just got back from my first day at PT. She measured my ROM at 48 degrees, estim, passive exercise, and cold. Tomorrow I start in pool therapy.
Train Buff- I was in the immobilizer for 6 weeks (see my previous post). Basically for the first 2 weeks I was in bed, then cleared for weight bearing, as tolerated. Get a stool to rest your leg on when you use the bathroom.
Tiger- Sorry I got here late! My Pt was very optomistic about my eventual recovery, she is the team PT for the Panthers, she said going slow for the first 6 weeks is the way to go.

Email me if you have any questions!

post #246 of 10797
Thread Starter 

14 Weeks Post Surgery

Hi Guys: This forum thread has really grown - had no idea it would get this big. I'm glad we all have a place to find information.

Was lifting weights this weekend and working in the yard doing a ton of weeding (squatting and kneeling) and have had a pretty swollen knee since - I suspect it is a result of the weeding rather than the weights (at least that is how I am getting out of it this weekend).

Heading out for at least a 2 hour ride tonight with some rolling hills tossed in. Plan on doing some mountain biking this weekend.

I agree with Sinrider completely - work hard, and you'll see results. Keep after it all of you. I won't be coming around as much either, but you will all be in my thoughts and I'll visit from time to time.

post #247 of 10797
Hey -

I walked upstairs using the railing yesterday for the first time. I came down going backwards pretty easily. I have been going up and down the bottom 2 steps the last 2 weeks twice a day for up to 30 minutes. This seemed to really build my strength, balance and stamina. I will continue doing it, adding time as I go.

If I do make my goal of giving up my walker by the 16th, I will probably move to a quad cane next.

I'm not happy with my PT. I've been going 3 times a week, two on land and one in the water. Today she said I will no longer be able to go into the pool because of my progress, and she wants to do more on land. I disagreed and let her know how good it makes me feel to work in the pool & how much more I can do in the water. That's a big reason for my progress. I think my legs are still weak and I am really benefitting from the pool still. She basically said, "Too bad, that's the way it is going to be." She has really worked hard with me but we weren't happy with each other when I left.

Have any of you been told this, and what do you think of it?

Keep working hard...

Tiger Bait
post #248 of 10797
Tiger, If you like the pool, get a membership and go to a pool. Even if it does nothing for the knees, it is the mind that need the pool. lock your knees and swim!

Train, get up and out as soon as you can. Force the issue on yourself, it hurts but the sooner you do the better off you will be. If you have a brace you will not damage the surgery site. Standing will not cause damage unless you bend your knee. Good luck on the 16th, that is a long time to wait for surgery.

Dave, what were you up to in PI?

The best of days VS
post #249 of 10797

2nd day PT

PT went well, in the pool I walked against water resistance forward, backward, and side to side. I did the leg dangle from the side of the table, and she did ultrasound while I dangled. She didn't measure my ROM, since it was only the 2nd day. I return Monday for my 3rd session.

VS - I was a guest of the Philippine government to introduce the islands as a tourist destination. I am a retired Police Officer, and do the Travel Agent thing part time. I am also a registered nurse, but not familiar at all with orthopedics. It would have been a great trip.

post #250 of 10797
Wow I had a lot of threads to catch up on as I have been away flying most of this week.

Brewman - congrats on 05 ROM. Well done. Hopefully this is even better since you posted this.

Carl - congrats on getting brace off and graduation. It's great to see grads. Hopefully soon we will all be alumni

Davevalo - welcome. It's always with mixed feeling I see people join us. First I'm sorry that you injured yourself, and second we're glad to have you here offering and receiving support. So welcome and here's wishing you a complete and painfree recovery.

trainbuff - I was walking with a straight brace and crutches the day of surgery and every day since. I was discharged from hospital the day of surgery. I wore the straight leg brace for one week. After this I received a flex brace set at 15 degrees ROM. Each week for 6 weeks this was adjusted another 15 degrees. After 4 weeks I got rid of the crutches and after 7 weeks I was full weight bearing without a brace. It felt very unstable at first and I was sure it was going to give out, especially in the shower. PT started at 7 weeks and was and still is aggressive. I am now 11 weeks (or is it 12? - hang on I have to take my shoes off to count) post op and at 140 ROM and muscles are probably 70% or so. Still need to work on strength.

However I saw my GP yesterday and I have to go in for xrays Wednesday. It appears I have bone chips that were not removed at surgery, so they are talking about going in again. Crap! They suspect that is what is causing the feeling of walking on razor blades some days just below knee cap. So we'll see what happens next.

Keep up the great progress everyone. Well done.
post #251 of 10797

11 Weeks Post-Surgery

Hello gents,

Just want to share my excitement with all you classmates - at home tonight (May 10) I "walked" for the first time since my injury on Feb 20. Just a few steps at first, but got bolder and walked back and forth across a small room several times. I could only do this with my knee in a locked position. If i put full weight on the knee when it's unlocked, it wobbles and feels like it's going to collapse. So my "walk" is very much that of a peg leg. Nevertheless, it's kind of thrilling to move across the room without any crutches, 11 weeks post-op and 4 weeks into PT.

ankhsign - I'm hoping that you will be spared going under the knife again. You've come a long way so far!

Tiger Bait has spurred me to start ascending the stairs at home, even though my physical therapist has not had me try them yet. I'm using one hand on the railing and the other grips a crutch. Keep challenging me, Tiger Bait.

train buff - How are you doing?


post #252 of 10797
WAY TO GO PhillyBuster. This is great news re your first steps. I too was very wobbley my first few times. I swore I was going to fall and that my knee would give out. You're right, it is a great feeling to move across the room (or even a few steps) without the brace and crutches. Be careful and take it easy on the stairs. You and I had our injuries the same week and stairs are still a challenge. I am ok alternating legs going up stairs now and can do about 2 flights. (one flight at a time and then rest) but I'm still a little shakey alternating legs going down. So take it slow and easy. This is great through that you're taking your first steps. Keep it up. I found the strength and stability came back quickly once I started walking. Once I got started, there was no stopping me.
post #253 of 10797

6 months Post


Great to see the sharing of information and experiences!

Tomorrow (5/12) marks 6 months since my surgery, and I reflect on those first few days and weeks and am glad to be past that, and that you all are moving forward as well.

Recall I worked the woods hard 3 weeks ago and really had pain and swelling. I worked thru it. This weekend I have spent 2 full days in the yard, cleaning gardens, mowing, tilling the garden, etc, all those things I wondered how I would accomplish just a few short weeks ago. And other than some general knee pain (started Glucos/Chondroit again) the the ever-present "elastic band" around my repaired knee, all went fine! I finally can beleive that I am back! I look forward to the one year anniversary as I keep hearing that is when you really know your new reality.

DaveValo: sorry for your injury, but you are in the right place to receive real life advice and great mental support. Best to you!

IDG: I experienced swelling at 14 weeks, even at 20 weeks, but very little now. So continue to expect "stuff" but it WILL end!

So my fellow travelers, thank you for all your thoughts and positivity! I will now join Sinrider, Vermont Soldier and Idaho Guy in "graduation". I will probably still follow your progress, and perhaps comment on occasion if I feel I can offer something, and perhaps give an update on experiences at 7,8,9 etc months. Keep asking the questions, and keep up the great attitudes men!

Au revoir per maintenant!

post #254 of 10797

Thanks for hosting and contributing to this forum.

On April 5th I too had this disaster strike in my life, when I slipped and fell while walking down a flight of stairs at a friends. No one's fault but mine, I simply didn't watch where I was going.

Boy did life change that fateful day. I saw the Othropedic doc that following Monday and diagnosed a QTDR in my right knee. As was stated to me, I needed surgery sooner rather than later, and that it should be done ASAP.

I underwent the knife two days later. The pain was nothing short of brutal. My poor wife took me hope one post operative and the long recovery has begun.

I now stand at 4.5 weeks post-op. I am allowed to some passive bending of the knee as I was taught at PT. PT was started at the four week mark. I stand at about a 80+ degree ROM right now. I am working hard to get that number up further.

The pain is pretty much gone, except for the mild discomfort that comes with the PT sessions and the passive bending.

From reading all the posts on this forum I can see that just like the OS told me, I am in for a long recovery. What amazes me the most is just what a devastating injury this one is, and how long the recovery period takes. I had the unfortunate experience of having the ACL repaired in this same knee some years ago, and from what I remember it was nothing like what I am facing here.

I guess that I have to be patient and wait for the healing to complete. I am concerned that I ight never walk right again, but from what I read here, I will someday be able to return to what is a normal life.

I have to tell you that I no longer take for granted the little things, like tying my shoes. Boy how life has changed.

Thanks for all the great posts - its an inspiration to me to know that others have gone through this traumatic injury and have been able to recover from it.

post #255 of 10797
Hi DavidM. I agree with you. I've experienced many injuries over the years, but none compare with a torn quad tendon. The pain is brutal. Let's hope that none of us do this again. My pain came back in spades when I started forcing the tendon to stretch and got aggressive as ordered by the OS and PT. That was a new expereince in pain.

For those still in pain, my Dr prescribed "phlogel untra diclofenac" this week. It is a cream that you massage into the knee. It works quite well and quickly to ease the pain. It is for arthritis and acute injuries such as this. Talk to your Dr and maybe give it a try. It helps me.
post #256 of 10797
Boyz- I came danger close to flying my glider today! I was able to jump in the cockpit, strap in and the day was perfect. Warm with some thumping thermals to 8-10k. I will, but today was not the day. I can not imagine having to make a serious left turn to climb or descend and not have left rudder due to this knee. Another day for sure.

PB, I guess that i just took it for granted that you had been walking on your own at 11 weeks postop. Silly me, good work man, it is all up hill from here!

Davevalo-Is PI that calm these days? It was very interesting just a very few years back. Good luck with that endeavor, PI is a great corner of the world.

David M-Welcome, this injury f***ing sucks but it will get better as difficult as that is to beleive today.

Brewman-Sucks you had to stop drinking beer for this injury. Tha ti s extreme sacrifice.

The best of days VS
post #257 of 10797
VermontSoldier: Better to be on the ground wishing you where up in the air than be up in the air wishing you where on the ground.
post #258 of 10797
Hey -

PhillyBuster: I forgot to congratulate you on your ROM, and it's great you're walking some without crutches. I know the next couple of weeks will be a time you will really progress. I didn't start feeling human until 7 weeks or so, and look at us now. If you think about it, those first weeks don't even seem real anymore. So, for David M and a few of the new guys, keep working hard and one day you too can be like our graduates.

In2falling: It's been 25 years since I went skydiving, but wouldn't it be great if you, Vermont Soldier and I jumped one day together? What's the worst that can happen? Never mind, don't answer that...

Ankhsign: I hope you have good news with your x-rays Wednesday.

trainbuff: I know your surgery on the 15th will go well. I'll be praying for you and you'll have a bunch of support from all of us from the start.

As for me, still no pain and very little swelling, but does anyone else feel like they have elastic bands around their knees?

Tiger Bait
post #259 of 10797
Tigerbait - yes to the elastic bands, and also one on the tendon. I wish that darn thing would stay stretched and not tighten up every night. I feel like that movie groundhog day where every day I wake up the same as the previous with no progress right now.

trainbuff - we're all cheering for you on the 15th. May you wake up and realize that this whole injury was a bad dream. Failing that, may you wake up to a speedy and painfree recovery.

Guys (I'm assuming that you're all guys) this phlogel untra diclofenac the Dr prescribed had me wake up pain free today. I applied it 3 times today just as pain was starting to come back and the pain went away. I had my best and longest workout todate post injury and the knee still feels pretty pain free. Normally I'm not a big fan of drugs, but right now, contrary to what we tell young people, "just say yes to drugs". The legal kind anyway.
post #260 of 10797

7 weeks post op

Hey gang,

Today marks 7 weeks for me, and I am somewhat feeling like a normal person again. Able to do things around the house, no walker, no brace. Got in the pool all by myself today. Still can't get in the bathtub, but I have a walk-in shower. Still not able to get into the drivers seat, but I can barely make it in the passenger seat.
My PT said the best thing for me is to sit on the edge of the bed and dangle the leg--it gets to about 75 degrees after 10 minutes. I really like my physical therapist's attitude--she is very uplifting!
I too always feel there is a band around my knee--she says that will go away, ank and tiger.
Trainbuff-I hope you have as good of a recovery as I did, after 3 days, no pain pills...I'll be praying for ya. Good Luck.
post #261 of 10797

Thanks for all of your sharing sharing of your information and experiences with this horrible injury. We all have to work hard and put this behind us.

I am now just about 5 weeks post op. I saw the OS yesterday and he ran some tests. Those tests went well and I can now lift me leg while lying down. Not too much pain anymore, except during PT stretching. Some swelling but from what I understand, that will be that way for a while to come..

OS changed my PT prescription. I now have started active flexing of the knee joint while lying on by back. Boy did that smart, but it seems to get better as the days go on.:

I too feel like someone wrapped my knee in duct tape or rubber bands. From what I was told, that is normal and will go away as I stretch out the repaired tendon. I am scared to death as I do the passive or active stretching exercises that I am going to tear something again. The PT folks tell me that this normal and that the OS wouldn't have let me start doing them if I wasn't ready for the work out.:

I had bit thrill today when I finally got to bend my knee and ride in the front seat of the car as a passenger. I also put on my own socks and shoes!!

Seems like things are getting better. I am pushing real hard to get things back into shape.

Thanks for all you comments. I believe that someday I will be able put this behind me.

post #262 of 10797

3 weeks 5 days post op

It is good to hear everyone's road to recovery. I had my second visit to my PT today and it was pretty grueling. Going in to the visit today, I was at 70 degrees ROM and he (the PT) pushed it to 90 degrees. Let's just say that he told me it was going to be painful, and he was right!!! After that he had me doing some exercises where I actually raised my lower leg, which felt weird but good...... My next appointment is next Monday and I think he is going to have me get on a stationary bike and push me even more. I like the fact that he seems to be aggressive with my rehab. I see my OS on Tuesday and will hopefully find out when he plans on releasing me from my brace. I can't imagine walking without the leg brace!

Trainbuff - good luck with your surgery on Thursday!

post #263 of 10797

3 week 5 days

Well got done seeing Dr Aggressive today and he was not to happy that I was only at 60-65 PROM he wanted me at 90 and said I was too stiff. So I get a CPM machine for a week to loosen things up ,and also get to start PT this week which I will be going to 3 times a week. Other than that everything seems to be going fairly well, thought I would be further along than this but it is only going on week 4.

Tiger: You are a brave man, skydiving 25 years ago was a very dangerous sport back then. I doubt we could get Vermont Soldier to leave a perfectly good airplane, most pilots I have met think we are nuts .
post #264 of 10797

40 Days Since Surgery

I had PT session #5 today; the first one since the OS' new prescription. I did some straight leg raises as well as leg extensions. My ROM is approximately 45 degrees, so I am still 15 degrees away from my prescribed maximum. The PT then moved my patella around a bit. It's still pretty stiff. The session wrapped up with 15 minutes of interferential current with ice (I would have preferred Glenfiddich with ice).

Train buff: Good luck with surgery and recovery.

Ankhsign: How many free PT sessions did you get? I heard that generally Canadians get eight freebies after surgery but in some cases they get 16. I would have thought that a QTR would warrant 16 but it sounds like the default is only eight.

post #265 of 10797

11 weeks post surgery

Haven't said hello for a while - GL to everyone on their recoveries!

Today was a milestone in PT, made a full revolution on the stationary bike, and actually cycled for 5 minutes! ROM is up to 100, and I go back to the doc in two weeks to see if I can return to work teaching! For now, just living the high life, doing my stretches, getting pampered by the wife, and pampering her back now that I can do a few chores around the house - even planning an Alaska cruise for the summer! :

Finally no longer need the leash (loop) to get in and out of the car, and can now sit in chairs with the knee bent. For a while I never thought I'd get to this point - to those on the road, don't worry, it will come!
post #266 of 10797

one more day

hello everyone..well I see everyone is getting better...well thursday at 1000 hours is the time I have to be at the hospital...going to stay overnight and then like 30 days in rehab hospital, since Im not blessed like you guys to have a wife to help take care of me...well wish me luck and say a prayer for me.. I believe God will heal me and make my knees strong again ....so how long does this operation take..is the pain really that bad...well I plan to keep you updated..once I get to the rehab hospital and my lodge brothers bring my cell..well thanks guys and everyone stay strong...you all have been very helpful, at one time I was very depressed but you have made me stronger and I can see the light at the end of the tunnel
post #267 of 10797
TrainBuff: Good luck and wish you the best on your surgery and recovery. Ya the pain is fairly bad but nothing that pain meds can not take care of, its bad for like two days. Since you will be in the hospital and not shoved out the door the moment you wake up : like most of us were with out patient surgery it should not be to bad. My surgery took an hour and a half so you will be under a while.

Best Wishes
post #268 of 10797
Train, good luck thursday. The pain sucks but you decide what you will put up with and you own your recovery. Dont push it but dont fear it.

I am 13 weeks post surg 2 days ago and I was able to run about a mile today. It felt great and I was very pleased with that.

In2 & Tiger- Perfectly good aircraft are for flying. Airlines and civil aviation tell you to stay in you seat with your seatbeats secured about your waist for a reason. In2, remember the reason you are following this thread!!

Best to all! VS
post #269 of 10797
Train Buff - Good luck and hope you have some cute nurses

From the forum here, there is certainly a range of how long to be in a cast and how long before you can stand. I was able to stand after surgery, but some people here could not. Some had casts for a full 6 weeks, some less.

Best advice - Follow the directions the PT gives you, and do what you can to stretch, even if it is just toe wriggling. From what I've seen on the forum here, recoveries seem to be better when you try to move what you can while casted to keep your muscles from too much atrophy. All the best, Buff, and look forward to hearing from you on the forum soon!
post #270 of 10797

Train Buff

TBuff: best of luck tomorrow!! I was in around 1 and home by 8:30...most of the time in recovery. I think it is very good you will be in a rehab hosp, it will get you up sooner than perhaps the rest of us. Do what they say, and a little more. Movement will come, dont let failure discourage you! Look at all of us, we all were down, you will get back up!


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