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Quadriceps Tendon Rupture, Repair and Rehab - Page 84

post #2491 of 10808

Wow Gymdude!  That blows man.  I've kept good spirits through it all and the progression but I'm not sure I'd be so positive the second time around.  Keep your chin up and do what you know works.  Rest easy now until it's healed up and then get aggressive and stay motivated when the time comes to stretch and strengthen!



post #2492 of 10808

Curling Geek,


My injured leg was pretty much in the same condition as yours although, unlike you,  i was unable to bend at the knee. Neither did I feel any pain other than the initial minute or so when the injury occurred. Pain post op was different for me though. When you come round and if they offer you morphine, say yes.   


Can't add anything to TD's post to the new guy's other than I was unable to ice my leg for the fist 2.5 weeks as I was in a cylindrical cast. But ice, as often as you can, within in safety limits. I don't think that any two people from the board have gone through identical processes of surgery, rehab and recovery speeds. Only your OS knows what he's had to do to patch you up.   




I'd like to say welcome back but in the circumstances it doesn't seem apt. At least you know what your in for!


All the best,



post #2493 of 10808

gymdude,  That sucks, sorry to see you re-upping your membership to this club. 


gottagetback,  My OS suggested getting the nerve block too.  Compared to other experiences here I think it helped quite a bit.  The pain wasn't as bad as I expected.  I was on the pain meds for 4 days.  None of the DRs suggested a stool softner, but that would probably be a good idea too.  As far as going to the bathroom, I was concerned about that going into too, but I didn't turn out to be an issue.  Aside from the beer, I think you'll be able to enjoy the superbowl.


When I injured my leg I couldn't actively bend or straighten my leg.  If I was sitting on a bench or table with my leg dangling over the side I couldn't raise or straighten my leg.  If I was laying with my leg out straight, I couldn't bend the leg.  I could do a straight leg lift a couple of inches though.



post #2494 of 10808

Sorry to read about so many newcomers to the QTR fraternity. And a comeback - sounds dreadful!


Gottagetback, During the 4 weeks that my QTR remained undiagnosed I was treated for dislocated patella. The syptoms are somewhat similar - pain, inability to straighten the leg, inability to lift the lower leg, .... The treatment is similar too, except that an operation would be considered only after the patient has been through full PT and proper knee function has failed to return. Somehow, the QTR option just did not feature in the doctors' minds - I had all the symptoms and they missed it.


Once you're in a proper straight knee immobilizer you won't need to worry about injuring the leg anymore. It is sturdy and stable. You'll learn to master the crutches eventually, and that's how you can get some independence and mobility back. 

Originally Posted by gottagetback View Post

Also i have heard guys on here say that they had there injury for up to 4 weeks before getting diagnosed with a full tear, but for me that would be totally out of the question as i am not able to lift my leg at all and the pain and nevousness of injurying it more than it is makes me wonder is something else wrong also. i cannot bend or lift mt bottom half of my leg is this normal?


post #2495 of 10808

Hi All:


So sorry, gymdude. Hope you don't mind if some of us newer folks ask you for advice along the way since you've already been there. Really hope your recovery goes smoothly.


New folks: I  too would encourage a nerve block. I had no pain, as in zero, for the 3-4 days after surgery with one. There are different types, mine was a "dumb" one that didn't allow for patient control of the drip. It worked just fine. After that, I was on Celebrex twice a day for about  three or four more days and that was it. Nothing since (6+ weeks). Apparently, if you get ahead of the pain right away, you have a much easier time post-op. Also, as someone else said, it minimizes the anesthesia. My doc said they just put me under very lightly. She said they could have awakened me easily. Having had some fairly awful post-op nausea before, this was a comparative breeze.

Stool softeners, definitely and maybe some cascara if necessary. Get the toilet booster seat, trust me on that one. It makes your transfers to and from toilet much easier. GO SLOW! Everything at 1/2 speed. My PT told me to count to five when I go from sitting to crutches to make sure I'm solid before I take any steps. I'll add my vote to the majority: the first six weeks are passive. All I've been doing are quad isos and prone leg lifts, augmented with situps and light upper body weight work while I'm on the floor.


I see the OS in two days. Hoping I'll be released to doing some active stuff..Cheers to all. Mel

post #2496 of 10808

Thank you gentlemen for your time and advice it means alot to be able to communicate with others going thru the same thing, i will definately let my wife know about the suggestions for she is the one who makes everything happen, and will stay in touch thru out this .

post #2497 of 10808

Having read about Padrebear’s impressive Army-style PT routine, I turned up for my week 7 (post-op) PT appointment hoping for something similar.  I was quite adamant that I felt ready for a more physical regime, with a view to progress to full cardio exercises shortly.There has been a lot of discussion about the differnt PT ptotocols, so I thought I'd add yet another one to the forum.


Realizing that the best way to get me to do as told, my PT set out to prove to me that I’m not actually ready for the physical stuff yet. Here goes:

  1. Simple straight leg raises with a thick rolled-up towel under the repaired knee. Lift and hold for 5s. Repeat 10 times. FAILED – fatigued after 6 or 7 reps
  2. Lying on the back, lift the injured leg straight 20 cm above the floor, pull the toes towards you. Hold for 5s, repeat 10 times. FAILED. Quads started to shake from fatigue
  3. Lying on the back with bent legs (as far as ROM allows). Feet flat on the floor. Both legs perfectly parallel. Knees close together. Lift the butt from the floor (bridge position). Hold for 5s, repeat 10 times. FAILED, could only do 5 properly, the rest under strain.
  4. Standing with some support for balance. Push up onto your toes as high as possible. Hold for 3s, repeat 10 times. FAILED. Cannot get all the way up onto my toes on the injured leg.
  5. Balance board. Tip back and forth so the rim of the board touches the floor in a rhythmic and controlled way, FAILED: was too shaky.
  6. Balance for 30s on injured leg. OK. Repeat with eyes closed. FAILED.


Outcome – the PT will not let me do exercises that involve full weight bearing on the legs (except walking wearing the ROM brace, atill set at 70 degrees) until properly strong and stable. The reason is that you might otherwise fall and re-tear the QTR (catastrophe!)  or cause some secondary injury or strain. PT talked a lot about the importance of muscle control, muscle memory and balance.


Stationary bike (once ROM is >110), recumbent bike and swimming are OK now. Rowing machine and cross trainer are not OK yet. PT progression to Pilates gym ball, and step exercises still to come.

post #2498 of 10808



So sorry to hear of your return.  I went back and read your posts of 2009 and it appears you made a great recovery. Keep your spirits up and remember how well you were doing 12 weeks post-op!


Question:  did your leg ever feel "normal" in the two years between injuries?   My leg feels like it has rope in it and gets sore easily (7 weeks post-op).




post #2499 of 10808



Are you still putting in 50+ lengths in the pool?  Are you kicking or just pulling with upper body?

post #2500 of 10808

Swimming free style is fine. No problem at all. Using weak leg kicks only. Pushing off from the sides with good leg only.

PT says reduce the amount if it leads to knee swelling or pain. Back stroke should be fine too, not breast stroke.

Walking, squats et cetera in the deep water is of course also great, as others have written about before.

post #2501 of 10808

HEY guys it is the same puertorrian guy just have some issue with the logins , but finallly here


let me say taht THANKS GOD i will finally have my surgery this wednesday feb 2 , two weeks after the injury , but the OS will be a sport medicine specialty OS  so i am hoping to finally begin my progress and feel normal again , i know will take time but with all your comments and advices and if i everything goes great IT WILL HAPPEN.


Just hope to find a good PT place/person because they told me the OS is very pro actice and already ask for some machine some CPM  or something for passive movement so i hope this will help


well my fellows QTR i will let you know and will keep reading , take care you all and  LET KEEP LEAVING WITHOUT FEAR!!!!



post #2502 of 10808

I am scheduled to have surgery Friday and am meeting with a friend of mine who is a PT tomorrow at my home in Toronto.  I am going to ask a bunch of questions, but if anyone wants me to ask her anything, let me know.  She works at a world class Sports Medicine Clinic so I am sure she will have some info for all us active QTR's.


I can't tell you how great it is to have found this forum and I will be sure to return the favor to future members when posting throughout my recovery post surgery and journey back to health.



post #2503 of 10808

My surgery was, also, done with a nerve block and light sedative to put me barely under. I could have gone home the same day as surgery but we decided to go one overnight and I was discharged by noon the next day.


Most pain I had after surgery was in the patellar which felt like a deep bone bruise. Probably an apt description given the drilling to anchor the quads. Most other pains centered around the surgery area and as soon as the staples were removed 8 days post op I was immediately off any pain meds. 


I shared my PT routine because I have found insights in what others have been assigned and because of the great variety I have seen. It helps knowing what and why folks are doing things.


post #2504 of 10808

9 weeks post injury as of Feb 2

8 weeks post-op as of Feb 3

My PT just returned from a week ski trip (shudder!) and told me that I was doing fantastic: 125 degrees of ROM, walking well (limp less pronounced), and some quad muscle tone returning. 


She still has me on a conservative exercise regimen compared to many of the posts I read (such as Padre Bear and Texas Diesel). She wants me to avoid walks altogether and hit the elliptical machine and the recumbent bike, beginning with 15 minutes a day. 


Not complaining since she will be ready to release me in two weeks or so.  She will give me a weight routine to follow in the gym.  Hopefully a little more agressive than what I have been doing.


There is light at the end of the tunnel!  In the scheme of things the tunnel does not seem so long any more.


Best to all Quaddies,


post #2505 of 10808

125 is fantastic!  Don't sweat aggressive PT because it sounds like you are about to graduate and have plenty of time for that.  There are things you can still do to push it a bit until you get the clearance.  When my PT had me on the bike, I'd do a 5 minute warm up on level one and then he'd have me go the next ten minutes doing intervals of the maximum level I could do and keep my RPM's above 80 for a minute and then lower it back to level 1 to recoup.  That really helped with some leg strength.


I also like to alternate going forwards on the elliptical for 5 minutes, followed by 5 minutes in the reverse rotation direction.  I also do this in the interval method with elevation 1, resistance 4 followed by elevation 10, resistance 8.


Happy healing!



post #2506 of 10808



Fantastic news, gives hope for us who are still waiting for surgery!  Congrats and keep up the good work.



post #2507 of 10808

How does your knee feel after a workout?  Last week at 10 weeks post op, I intensified my workout.  20 reps x 3 on the leg press, 20 reps x 3 toes raises on the leg press, 15 minutes on the stationary bike at a moderate level, 15 minutes on the elliptical at a moderate level and then 20 reps x 3 on the leg extension at very light weight and squatting up and down with no weight.  That was the first day doing leg extension on the machine although I do leg extensions using 7.5# ankle weights at the PT office.  I did increase the resistance on the bike and elliptical.  None of the exercises hurt while doing them, but for days afterward I was sore and achy in the knee and I had some additional swelling on the top half of the knee.


Also, now at just about week 11 my ROM is about 130.  What sort of things are you doing to work on full ROM?



post #2508 of 10808

injury 01/02/11

surgery 01/21/11


First post, I have been reading the thread from the start for a few days now. First I would like to thank IDG for starting this. Like alot of people here it took two weeks to find out what the real problem was. I'm ten days post opp no swelling not much pain.i was told no range of motion no weight on injured leg.I have 24 steps to my house, had to slide up stairs backwards to get inside after coming home from hospital. Because of stairs got OK for home pt to work on stairs,first visit was last Friday.showed pt that i was doing side to side with leg as well as light flexes in cast,she then showed me to flex the knee down not only up but said not to do it DR. orders! mainly talked the first visit,I let her know that i have to be weight bearing on the injured leg to get up and down the stairs.i was doing it ok for almost 3 weeks before the repair.After she left I got a call from her okd me to continue with the flexes 3x a day! Also have been walking on injured leg with some weight over the weekend,no pain no swelling.the one thing that I think has helped me the most is the ice machine i was sent home with.Stitches come out this Thursday,Its very hard not to want to get this behind you.I work in ship repair so my whole day is spent climbing stairs and ladders and uneven surfaces.

post #2509 of 10808



After workouts my leg feels weak and tight above the knee.  Some have described it as having a "band above the knee".  That generally lasts 24 hours and then back to my general state of normal while walking and doing nothing too strenuous but weak when I try to do something more than walk.


For ROM, I'm back to full range but want to stay that way and do a few things.  I have a leg day that consists of single leg activity for the repaired leg only.  I will do a seated leg press with the seat as far forward as I can stand to push with my good leg.  I then get the bad leg in there and take the weight back towards my body as far back as I can.  My knee actually ends up in my arm pit and a bit deeper as my heel touches my butt.  I'll also do bodyweight squats on a BOSU ball that helps with blance but I will go as deep as the leg will allow me to go, as slowly as I can go down, and then back up.  I also still do the stationary bike that day with the seat as low as I can stand and still make a full revolution.





Welcome to our little club and it sounds like you are well on your way to those stairs again before you know it but never soon enough.  Hang in there, stay positive, and stay motivated to get better.



post #2510 of 10808

4 weeks and 1 day post-op today, saw surgeon for 1 month f/u.  ROM 75.  I've been swimming and walking with brace at 40.  Quads coming back slowly.  First PT visit this coming Friday.  Doc said passive only first couple visits then more active at 6 weeks post-op.  In the office today while seated with knee at 75 I showed him how I can raise it up and extend it straight out level.  He said to not do that until 6 weeks post-op, but he was pretty happy with his repair job.  He is holding me back a little which is probably good.  Knee feeling better day by day.  When walking limp is much less obvious now.  Seems we have had an epidemic of quad-rippers.  Good luck to everyone and thanks for your input.  Andy.

post #2511 of 10808



Thanks for the information.  How often are you doing the stationary bike and elliptical?  Do you do those on the same days?



post #2512 of 10808


10 weeks on Saturday post surgery, injury 4 days previous



Trips to PT and OS  this morning,



Bit of a waste of time. Whole appointment lasted less than a minute. Just told me to dump the brace (practically did that 7 day's ago) having seen me do 1 leg raise from a seated position. Didn't even examine the knee or check the repair. Just scheduled another appointment for 6 weeks. Couldn't get a response either way about the need for hinged braces. Should add it wasn't the surgeon who carried out the repair which might explain some of it.  





Much more receptive to patient care and concerns, but acknowledged that loosing the the brace is the thing to do. His main concern centered around the tightness of the repair. I remember the ultra sound nurse saying something about the rupture being about 4 inches past the kneecap which might explain this.  I've been stuck around 90 for over a week, with at bit of work and a little pain we managed to get about another 10 deg. Not heard it mentioned on here before but I've been told to HEAT the knee before stretching and to up my routine. Added a new stretch, laying on my side, bad leg on top, towel  around the ankle, grab the ends of the towel and pull the heel towards your butt till you feel the stretch and hold for 20/30 sec's.Also added squats with my back flat against a wall. I need to do this every hour 10/20 reps. Also told to stay away from any gym equipment involving the injured leg and climbing stairs. The tightness is a bit of a concern. Will take a lot of effort to get ROM, if possible, back to where it was. No return to work date yet either.


Sorry guy's sounds a bit depressing. Not feeling that bad about it really. Hopefully the new work outs will pay dividends.


Good luck to the new guys, older guys, keep it up.



post #2513 of 10808



Yes, my leg felt normal for most of the 2 years. For the first few months, I tweaked it a couple of times, and had to have fluid removed once, but after a few months, it felt normal, except for weaker in the gym.

post #2514 of 10808

Overall, I go by feel but I will do the bike on my leg days (twice per week) and the elliptical the other 5. I work out at 4:30 in the morning so many of the days I'll do another 30 minutes on the elliptical when I get home from work.
post #2515 of 10808

Gymdude, thanks for the reply!  I do expect it will take months to feel normal.  I am not sure if I am imagining that I can feel the FibreWire they sewed into me or it is just swelling and general tightness.

post #2516 of 10808

TD,  Thanks for the feedback.


Yorkiequad,  I don't apply heat at home anymore, but my PT applies heat to the leg each time I see him for about 15-20 minutes before we get started.  It does seem to loosen things up a bit.  I was given that stretch with the towel recently too.



post #2517 of 10808

Cheers Ken,


Thanks for the feedback. Just in the process of warming around the knee. I've got a wheat bag that you stick in the microwave for a few minutes. Will give you my view of results in the next few days. all I can say for now is the knee feels comfy and warm :-).



post #2518 of 10808

7 weeks Post-Op:


Saw OS on Tuesday, he finally moved my brace to 60 rom. I am currently at 45 rom and stuck!! My OS talked about electric stimulation, does that help with bending? Should I warm my knee with a heating pad before I do my bending routine? Any suggestions would be greatly appreciated.



post #2519 of 10808

Electric stim only helps the muscles to start "firing" again.  The muscles have been atrophied due to underuse and they forget what to do sometimes.  This is a method that helps them remember how to contract and work.  It doesn't help with ROM.


Warming can kind of depend.  It always helped me and my PT sessions always started with 15 minutes of the electric stim with heating pads on top of and underneath the leg.  I say it depends because I know some that say the heating increases the swelling which then could decrease ROM.  See how it affects you.


The best exercise for my ROM in the earliest days are wall slides.  Once I was able to go around on a bike, lowering the seat helped a lot.

post #2520 of 10808



Can't offer advice but can tell you that I didn't have any physio till about 7 weeks post op and got about 45 deg. I was only instructed to heat up the area around the knee today by my PT after reaching about 100 deg with some assisted stretching. He said it would help with softening before stretching as everything felt tight. I can't imagine it would do any harm but always best to seek advice from the pro's before changing anything you've been instructed on. Having just tried it about half an hour ago, for me, it does appear to help me stretch a fraction or so further than with out heating. 



 I have used electrical stimulation before on a MCL strain suffered a few years back and that seemed to help at the time however if your OS  has suggested it can't do any harm to give it a go.


Al the best



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