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Quadriceps Tendon Rupture, Repair and Rehab - Page 81

post #2401 of 10808



I know this is a late reply so forgive me as I just got on this site this weekend.  I have not read through all 80 pages but your thread caught my eye as this is my first encounter with someone else with a blood clot.  I injured my left leg 12/1 had the tendons repaired 12/9. On Sunday night 12/12 I noticed a charlie horse sensation in my lower left calf (injured leg).  A nieghbor of mine just had had ACL repair and had multiple clots so I suspected my charlie horse was a clot.  The next ultrasound and doppler confirmed 2 clots in my bad leg.  Have been on cumadin ever since but I seem to be doing ok.  The main challenge is keeping the blood levels adjusted correctly.


How are you doing with your clots?

post #2402 of 10808

4+ weeks post op


Thanks Cville guy. I will go back and look at those posts. Pool workouts sound perfect. My poor quad looks pretty skinny!


Lakeswimmer: Ouch, I can identify with the dislocated knee. I've dealt with that issue most of my life. Sounds like you got through the early recovery OK, despite the delay. I think everybody is pretty much on the six week wait. Sounds like you, Cville guy and I are at about the same place and pretty much on the same track. I've been doing other fitness stuff at home, can't wait to get to the gym. Found out my PT allows current and former pts to use all of his equipment indefinitely at no charge. Looks like I found a new gym, lol. Take care.


Nordicracer, I'm enjoying your outdoor updates a lot. Can't wait to get back outside! All the best, Mel

post #2403 of 10808


16 weeks since surgery

17 weeks since injury


I tore the quadriceps tendon in my left knee playing basketball.  I would like to report that I am doing well and feeling pretty good.  I don’t try to run but I can walk fairly normal.  Occasionally, someone will comment that I am limping.  Walking down a set of stairs is still my biggest problem but it is coming along.  Again, everything just takes time.  I had mentioned quite a bit early on about how my knee felt unstable.  This is still a little bit of a problem at times.  And usually, the first few steps I take are a little awkward.  I just wanted to provide an update.  I also can do a very slow jog.  But then again, I was never known for my speed anyway.  J



post #2404 of 10808

My quad is pretty skinny too.  Going to try the stationary bike today.  5 weeks post-op. 

post #2405 of 10808


I got a 3.5 mile hike out in the woods today. I pushed it a bit and covered more demanding terrain than I did on my first hike a couple weeks ago. The big difference I noticed was that my knee was not locking. From PT I’ve learned to tense up my muscles around the knee cap and that really helped when the going got tough. Steep down hills are still challenging and there we a few wobbly moments, and yes, its still a bit tight and noticeable. The big thing is I’m not in pain and didn’t really feel much soreness while I was out there.  I see the OS on Thursday. It will be interesting to see what he says.

Best wishes to all, hang in there!


post #2406 of 10808

5 weeks post-op this Tuesday:


Jayman are you wearing a hinged brace when you go hiking? In 4 weeks I am headed to the Caribbean on vacation, I was hoping that I would be able to do some hiking. I see my OS on Thursday and I am crossing my fingers he starts me on PT. He has had me locked at 30 ROM for 2 weeks now. It's gonna be tough to fly if I'm not at least to 90 ROM when I'm 9 weeks post-op.



post #2407 of 10808


I was at about 9 weeks when I left the brace totally behind. At first I would make small moves without the brace while staying on the same floor (couch to bathroom etc.) then I got to where I was ambling all over the house without the brace – but I always had it on outside. By the 9th week, the brace was falling off all the time, the OS cleared me (with a warning to be extra careful outside) and I left it behind. But it was still a few weeks before I tried to hike on a very easy trail.


If you’re going to someplace like St John’s – it’s pretty rough terrain. I wouldn’t do it at the point you’re at. I had to take my wife across country to see a specialist (long story) right after the injury, and I had to postpone my surgery until after I got back. You can fly. It’s no fun – but it’s doable – 30 degrees ROM is way more than I had. Try to get aisle seats…. 

post #2408 of 10808

Merlin 55,


Cheers for the feed back. Used to the ride roads a lot in my mid to late teens. Just thinking it would be a good way to get some fitness and strength in a month or so without the impact of running. Where i live it is possible to avoid long steep climbs but impossible to get anywhere without having to climb at all, particularly if you want to avoid the traffic. Thanks once again.

post #2409 of 10808

5.5 weeks post surgery

7 weeks sfter injury


The other day I posted that I would ride the stationary bike. My intent was just to do half circles back and forth.  My wife scolded me or not following Dr orders and waiting until this Friday, 1/21 when I can start walking with my brace off


Question for anyone:  many of you seem to start walking with the leg brace on but unlocked just a few weeks into your recovery.  My OS never made any mention of doing this and instead told me to go from walking around locked to braceless.  He says that the unlocked position offers no prorection from buckling so it serves no real purpose.  Has anyone heard different from their OS?


I have been doing well in my isometric straight leg lifts until last night when pain returned to my kneecap.  I have been flexing my leg to close to 100 degrees (PT took me to 90 last week).  Anyone else have pain return this area a few weeks into PT?




post #2410 of 10808



I flew back from China 3 days after my accident with a straight plaster cast.  It's doable with an isle seat but not much fun.  You will be fine .

post #2411 of 10808



My brace was 100% locked for 5 weeks after surgery and then unlocked at 30 degrees with notes to open it up as makes sense with my PT guy.  Your OS is correct in that it being unlocked provides no protection or structural integrity.  Any range it can be locked into prior to the "open" setting will give you protection after that degree of motion.  So, when it's locked at 30, it can't go past that and would provide protection.


I was fully locked until week 5, given the ok for PT, started walking around the house without the brace by week 6, and was fully braceless at week 7.  I'm not saying this is what you should do or where you should be, but am giving feedback as to where I was in a similar state.

post #2412 of 10808

Today is the day I have been looking forward to for the last several weeks - the 6-week check up with the OS and PT (5.5 weeks post-op to be exact). I have been confined to the knee immobiliser for the entire time, without any substantial PT, because of the use of artifical tendon implant. It was such a relief to be transferred to a hinged brace (set at 70 degrees) and start walking normally again. Was a bit unstable to start with, but ended up walking half a mile three times over (this was not planned!) and that has done the trick. Walking on level ground seems to be OK now. In my case strength training of the quads is still not permitted, and I was told to just concentrate on increasing the ROM over the coming weeks. Right now my ROM is 60. Straight leg raises are OK too  - first time I've managed to do it properly for 2.5 months (since injury).


About flying long distances: I had to fly from Europe to South Africa while in the straigh leg cast. That was just about bareable, very tedius and uncomfortable. The long walks through the airports on crutches were really challenging too. Cannot recommend it.

post #2413 of 10808

Texas Diesel,  thanks much for the feedback. It seems that every PT and every OS has a different plan for us. Of course our injuries, while similar, may vary enough to warrant different prescriptions for therapy. I have enjoyed reading your postings.


Lakeswimmer, be interested to hear about how you felt after your walks.  I am 6 weeks post-op tomorrow (7 weeks post injury today) and my PT says she will guide me through walking at tomorrow's PT session. I hope to take some short walks this weekend and want to get some sense of what may be too much or too little.  I am so looking forward to walking after 7 weeks!

post #2414 of 10808

I was in 2 full leg casts for 6 weeks, then another 4 in braces, instructed to stay locked, except during supervised PT. My first PT visit at about 8 weeks I had 90+ ROM. Aside from PT, I didn't unlock them except when in a vehicle so I could ride like a normal person. He gradually let me open it to about 30 degrees so I could walk a little like a human being, but even after 10 weeks I'd find my knees locking at times, so I took a pair of crutches with me wherever I went, and was glad I did several times. Mine was bilateral so he took no chances at all as far as my limited allowed ROM in the braces. I would not try to push it, believe it or not, the docs usually know better than we do.

post #2415 of 10808



i am about the same as you going without the brace and then week 7 to on my own.   put me on the treadmill at week 6.   slow walk for about 45 minutes everyday.   rom at 110.    no strength training yet.   said maybe an elliptical or bike next week.    When did you start being more active on the aerobic stuff?    can't wait to break a sweat.

post #2416 of 10808

Jumpman,  I think I trail you by about a week or so. My surgery was 12/9 and injury was 12/1.  My PT seems really conservative compared to what I read here but I need to listen to her (she is the wife of my OS!).  I get to start some walking without the brace tomorrow.  Any advice?  Thanks!

post #2417 of 10808

I'm 3 weeks post-injury and 16 days post-op.  Starting to feel human again.  I remain in brace set at 20 degrees.  Haven't used the crutch for last 3 days.  Managed a trip to Seattle last weekend, flew from Salt Lake post-op day 10 and back post-op day 12.  Delta was really nice and gave me bulk head isle both ways.  I was able to keep my leg straight with my foot under the first class seat in front of me.  In the airports everyone wanted to put me in a wheelchair, but that would not work because there was no way to keep the leg straight so I just hobbled around.  Swelling is all gone except for around the patella.  Quads are thin mush.  Feeling starting to come back around incision.  I have been off all pain meds for over a week, not even motrin.  I am very careful and walk pretty well now.  Looking forward to PT soon, I see surgeon Feb 1st which will be just over 4 weeks post-op, we'll see what he says.  When I carefully try to bend my knee at all past about 20 degrees it feels so stiff and tight, hard to believe it will actually ever bend normal again.  Thanks for all your inspirational posts.  Andy.

post #2418 of 10808

Just a quick comment.  I'm about 6 months post-op, and looking back....the first month was hard, the second month was a little better, and by the third month I had adapted to all the many issues, but now improvements started becoming apparent.   SO hang in there, your leg(s) will get better...are getting better....just realize that the first 8 weeks are tough....but life will get better soon. 


FYI I'm a cyclist, we had 70 to 80 degree weather in San Diego over last weekend and I rode about 150 miles spread over the 3 days....not as fast as last year...but without pain from my repaired knee.

post #2419 of 10808

5 weeks 2 days Post-Op:


Saw my OS this morning and he started me on PT, Yeah! I was hoping that he would move my ROM to 60 but he said it would have to wait at least 2 more weeks.

My incision is healing well but my knee is still quite swollen, is that par for the course at my stage of the game?. I have more feeling in my kneecap than in previous weeks but it still feels sort of numb. My PT regime for the next 2 weeks is more of the same, ( pressing my leg down into the carpet to fire the quad to make it twitch and lots of leg lifts). It appears that my OS is taking a very conservative approach to rehab than what I've read about a lot of you on this thread. I have read numerous times on this thread  that the magic number for full healing of tendon to the patella is 6 to 8 weeks.  I asked my OS today how long it takes to heal and he said 3 to 4 months. I wish their was some specific standard to go by, I guess every ones injury is different.


Good luck to all, Glenn



post #2420 of 10808

Merlin55,  thanks for th epost. I really hope to be back on the bike in a few months.  Today I am 6 weeks post op and my PT allowed me to walk without the leg brace.  Felt great to walk.  How long for you before you climbed back aboard a road bike?

post #2421 of 10808

Big thanks to Cvilleguy for meeting me for lunch on Monday. Has anyone else met face to face on this forum? Just curious. 

Cvilleguy: Congrats for getting out of the brace. Leaving it behind was a big step for me. I got 10 minutes on the bike in PT today - and the seat is back down to a normal height.

Cnydiver: Swelling goes down steadily over time. Keep icing it - elevated if possible.

Best wishes to all - hang in there!!!

post #2422 of 10808

Morning guy's


injury 17th nov


surgery 20th nov


Just got back from PT and measured ROM around 70 deg ( 45 deg 2 weeks ago). They seem happy with any progress made ( always are, positive thinking and all that), Don't think they are going to move me to a hinged brace at any time. I keep getting a blank look when ever i mention it and a " what makes you think you need one". PT seemed to think my OS will make me dump the brace when i next see him ( 2nd Feb) so a hinged brace prob not worth the investment at this stage. Peg legging it around the house now without it at the moment anyway. Knee still swollen ( reducing all the time with icing) and feels weird and "pricky" and can get quite warm.



Anyone else gone straight from immobilizing brace to nothing?  




Have fun,



post #2423 of 10808

Jayman, you are so right about the leaving the brace behind.  Woke up this am and felt so much more normal.  At 6 weeks post-op this seems to be a major turning point.  All of you who are still immobilized or in a brace---keep heart!  First day of walking should feel great!

post #2424 of 10808



yes i am one week ahead of you surgery dec. 1.


on the treadmill PT said to kind of "snap" the leg forward so you get the quad firing.  1.9 mph the first time and it increases daily.  the leg responds.   up to about 2.6.   ice after as it does swell.   pt told me that once i get active again i will always ice the knee after.     feels good to finally get off my duff if only to walk.   


go to pt today and hoping to say let's get some strength going.    see what he says.   he told me last week probably start on the bike next week.   rom at 110.  always seems stuck but does move forward.   throughout the day he wants me to pull my foot back until there is a slight pressure on the knee and hold for 20 seconds.  said it will do wonders for the rom.   simple as it sounds seems to be working each time i see him.


good luck.....

post #2425 of 10808

the ortho doc said the tendon heals quickly at first, i.e. 50% within 5 weeks,  70% or so at 8 weeks.    then he said the healing slows down.   not 100% until maybe a year he said.   now, these guys are conservative for sure but you do hear all kinds of stories.   my pt guy said to take the Caltrate supplements as they will help the healing.


does anyone know for sure?   so, do you exercise but only the lighter type stuff (not bball for example) until 10 months or so?

post #2426 of 10808

 Merlin 55,   I'm right there with you as today is the 6 month anniversary of surgery.  Was hoping I'd be all healed up by now but I'm not.  I can ski, bike, hike and basically do everything I did before the injury just at about 80%.  Still got a ways to go and its looking like the folks who say its a year before you're 100% may be right.  I just keep plugging away and continue to see slow progress.  Best to all.  Brian

post #2427 of 10808


Thank you for your reply.  Great to hear you doing so well.  110 ROM sounds good to me. My PT forced me to 106 yesterday and I too feel that it gets better throughout the day. My PT has not placed me on the treadmill yet. She seems to be conservative but I intend to follow her letter of the law.  I am just grateful to be able to walk without the brace. Today is day 2 for walking!



post #2428 of 10808



I went from 6 weeks in a fixed casts on both legs 24 hours a day straight to nothing. There was a subsequent 2 week "transition" period where I was advised by the OS to put the casts on when I was up and about but, I pretty well left them off. I did walk around very carefully as you can imagine but started to drive right away without problems. After 8 weeks the OS told me I could keep them off.


Good luck.

post #2429 of 10808



 Sounds like your injury was much more extreme ( just the standard mono rupture for me) than mine. I'll take heart in the knowledge if it's okay for two legs its got to be okay for one. Kind of got used to the idea this afternoon and have been trying to walk correctly around the house and up the stairs ( with heavy leaning on the hand rail) .  I think it's going to be a case of getting my head around it as soon as possible, being cautious but not afraid. Have to admit though, just feels dam dangerous at the moment.   8 weeks is fast, good work. Might give the car go after the weekend.  



Cheers Joe

post #2430 of 10808

6 weeks post-surgery


Well, I had my 6 week visit with the OS on Wednesday and he also told me to get rid of the crutches and the immobilizer.  Asked him if he was going to put me on a hinged brace, he said no I didn't need it.  I'm not so sure about that, the leg felt pretty wobbly but I've been walking around for the last 2 days with nothing and it feels better already.  I had about 70-degree ROM right off the bat, which he said was really good.  First PT session is tonight.  I'll let you know how it goes.

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