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Quadriceps Tendon Rupture, Repair and Rehab - Page 126

post #3751 of 11192

Please be very careful.  You had very recent surgery, the tendon and bones have not reattached yet.  My OS told me that the tendons attached to the bone @ 6-12 weeks post surgery.  So the knee may feel well, but if you do too much too soon you can rip the tendon on the bone again.  So please take heed.

post #3752 of 11192
Originally Posted by jp96564418 View Post

fall 2/19, surgery 5 days later 100 percent tear in right knee quad tendon. 3 months rehab after straight leg brace removeed at 6 weeks. still have alot of pain and swelling. my left knee (thegood one) has very bad tendonitis now.. i has quartizone shot did nothing. why are you guys talking about the tendon is getting ready to tear? i could not do this again. please

A cortisone shot into a quad tendon that is damaged/inflammed is a very risky thing. steroids weaken tendons even if taking systemically and can lead to rupture, shooting a steroid directly into the quad tendon is generally frowned upon by most orthos, as while it may give some temporary relief of pain it increases the likelihood of rupture. I would not get that done ever. I asked my question about tendonosis because i am desperate to heal my non ruptured tendon. It hurts climbing stairs and even with simple body weight squats, the pain is right at the tendon patella junction. I am doing PRP and prolo now and was hoping to find others here who have some insight. I am surprised I am not seeing more posts on this as I thought my damaged tendon was a big reason it ruptured....is it possible that most of u posting here had healthy tendons that just popped one day? I guess its possible but the quad tendon is the biggest in the body, it seems more reasonable to me that it must be weakened/degenerative to rupture with some of the minor accidents that have been described here. I am a ER doc, and it is bizarre but often times that which seems reasonable is not reality. Since most people here are not complaining about their other tendon I am guessing it is more commonly just a freak accident. If anyone has experience with successful treatments for quad tendonosis please post it here. my orthos plan of "we wait till it ruptures then we fix it" sucks IMO

post #3753 of 11192

Blue belt


No tendon pain with either quad tendons here. Had my full qtr in feb 28 2012 and surgery march 11 2012. One thing I will agree with is the steroid taking issue. I been taking prednizone for about a 2 years every 4-6 months for sinus issues. I was about 2 weeks off of the steroid when i had my injury. My injury occurred while going up for a pretty intense lay up during a full court basketball game. After doing research on the qtr i realize the cards were stacked against me. I worked legs the day before to include killer leg extensions (which i will never do again), Im about 20lbs over my ideal weight(took care of that while doing intense rehab) and steriod use. Seems I had it coming LOL. Im almost 6 months post op and even though im still very aware of the injury, there are days when I dont even think about it. Im very active in fact Im at Ft Leonard Wood doing military training right now. I run every other day with little swelling if any at all. 3 months ago my whole leg would swell if doing rehab or walking for a work out. One more thing I did was change my nutrition. I juice 2 times a day and i take a multi vitamin with all the b supplements. I will do everything in my power to prevent this from happening again. Everything Ive read says steriods weekens tendons... Not touching them again lol.. To all the new qtr's please take your time and heal. I did not start PT until week 13. I complained about it too!  If you compare my recovery at 6 months to someone who pushed and pushed early against dr orders at 6 months there are probably no difference in our quality of life or athletic endeavors.. This site has been a great tool for me in my recovery and im greatful to all that post on here. Keep your heads up and stay in the fight!!!!

SFC Stevenson!!!

post #3754 of 11192

Bikeboyz1000 or anybody else - Begining to Run


It sounds like you are very active at 6 mos. I had full QTR (left), surgery 5/3, so I am just about 4 months post op.  I can walk normally, go up and down stairs, started biking two weeks ago, 10-15 miles with no pain at a nice clip.  However, I have tried running, on a treadmill and on solid ground, it is painful and I am not very fluid.  I can only go about  a minute at a time.  Any suggestions on how to ease into it.  How did you begin running, was their pain?


Suggestions from anybody would be very helpful, Thx.

post #3755 of 11192
Originally Posted by PDub View Post

Bikeboyz1000 or anybody else - Begining to Run


It sounds like you are very active at 6 mos. I had full QTR (left), surgery 5/3, so I am just about 4 months post op.  I can walk normally, go up and down stairs, started biking two weeks ago, 10-15 miles with no pain at a nice clip.  However, I have tried running, on a treadmill and on solid ground, it is painful and I am not very fluid.  I can only go about  a minute at a time.  Any suggestions on how to ease into it.  How did you begin running, was their pain?


Suggestions from anybody would be very helpful, Thx.

Im not sure but im thinking you have to have enough leg strength. When i say strength Im talking about the whole leg.. from the glutes down to the achillies tendon.. For me it wasnt until my hip flexor muscles were strong. That muscle group can be neglected during rehab. I was tested at 4 months and although my numbers were going up as far as strength was concerned, there still were noticable weakness in certain movements. At 4 months, I think a minute is a great start. Make sure you identify the difference between pain and discomfort though. I had discomfort at first and it totally worked itself out. Anytime I thought i felt PAIN, I stopped running..and walked until I felt comfy again.. Your ahead of the game so ease into it.. good work on the bike too..

post #3756 of 11192

Blue Belt:


My Qrip was due to a partial tear that wasn't diagnosed properly about 5 years.  The pain and weakness was persistent and I did get a couple of cortisone injections over the years.  They may have contributed to the eventual tear.  I don't know how that can be determined.


I've found that the home ultrasound unit I bought to work on the quad tear is pretty helpful when a shoulder or elbow gets unhappy.  I've used it 2-3 days and whether it helps or not, the pain goes away.  Sounds like you're pretty motivated to get back to the mat, (I'm going to miss nationals this Sept, but hope to return next year).  So, the $200 for the ultrasound starter kit may not be much of a hurdle.  I bought mine from MendYourTendon or something like that.


Something I think I've learned from this experience is that if something is rested, but pain persists, then it isn't getting better, and perhaps what you think is the problem isn't the real problem.  In my case, we thought the pain was referred pain from an arthritic patella/knee joint.  So, they told me to work harder to get strength equal to the other leg.  Eventually, warming up on squats, I solved the problem.  Going from two heads torn (from an MRI done in 2010) to almost complete tear in the blink of an eye.


Perhaps seeing a different doctor (something I should have done after 6-12 months of no improvement) may give you a different problem, that when solved, leaves you (pain) free to tackle other problems, like other blue belts.  I'm not having tendon pain issues in the other leg, although it has been getting a lot of work (and put on some size!).


Status update:


Had a checkup on week 14 last week, doc was very pleased, as was the PT, with the ROM and strengthening.  I'm having some pain on the inside edge of the patella and some soreness in the front (patella tendon), particularly after a hard swim.  I have lost some flexibility in my hamstrings and atrophied in my hip tilting (hip hiking) muscle on the left side, which means the right leg side kicks aren't looking like they should.  The PT gave me some exercises to work on that and it does seem to be helping.  I'm supposed to be able to start jumping/pylometric work on Aug. 30 (16 weeks post op).  He also told me I can start running then (I don't remember if he or the PA told me that if I dropped to 180 lbs that the running would be easier).  I'm at 193 now.


Overall, I credit this forum with the suggestions of getting in the pool ASAP, getting the blood flow up and sharing their rehab protocols as the source of my success.  It is still weak, and particularly after a workout, will sometimes give way while just walking down the hall.  I'm thankful to everyone's postings and contributions.  I also believe I've been blessed by being lead to this surgeon and the PT who were open to ideas of others.  God's been very kind to me in previous times of my life, so to not acknowledge that would be ungrateful.  


I'm interested in how your platelet therapy works out.  I could be a candidate for that.  I compete versus those 20-30 year olds too.


Let me know if you try the usound and if it works for you.  The protocol the doc told me to do was heat 15-20 minutes, unsound 3-10 min, 1 MHz, pulsed, then ice for 20-30 min.  It almost feels normal after that.


Good luck.

post #3757 of 11192

50 yrs old

295 lbs

LQT Full Avulsion

16 months ago


Blue Belt,


My brother..... I am watching your progress very closely.   You are fully aware of my journey (and I thank you again for your adivce and support last year)  but for others who aren't....

My left quad tendon experienced a full avulsion with a below parallel training squat of 525 pounds.  No warning.  Just pop.   Or so I thought.   I had suffered knee pain for two years that I mistakenly thought was a torn meniscus.   It wasn't.   My tendon was tearing and the pain was manifesting in the patella.   So my instantaneous failure at the bottom of that fateful squat was acutally the accumulation of years of tearing.  

As you know, I'm back lifting (light squats at 75 degrees) but all out on bench and deadlift.   I've pulled 633 in May in a meet and should hit 650 or 661 (300kgs) this November.  I am  monitoring your progress with PRP and prolo closely.  My ortho stated I have better than 50% chance of experiencing the same with my right knee.   I have no pain at all currently.  


For those that are in the early stages of this injury - I learned a heck of a lot on how to recover to full (or better than full) strength. 

1.  Be patient.   Keep that freakin' thing immobile for at least 8 weeks.   I don't believe in partial ROM at all until 8 weeks. 

2.  Proceed with extreme caution once you start PT (not before 8 weeks).  And, your first two weeks should be very slow wall slides and leg pumps.  

3.  At week 10 I started pool walking.   The greatest thing I did for PT.  

4.  Pain is not your friend in this process.  Most Physical Therapists has very limited experience with our rare injury.   If you can't find one that doesn't

     understand that this is a fragile recovery - then you should go it alone.   I did.  And there is a ton of info online.

5.  The only pain you should endure is with working our scar tissue once you hit full ROM (or can easily perform full rotation on a stationary bike).

6.  Take it easy once you have full ROM on weight training.   I didn't start deadlifting over 135 lbs. until 8 months.   With no scar tissue, full ROM and

     a nice, strong quad (great surgeon and patient rehab) the strength came back quickly.   

I realize I was lucky with timely surgery - 16 hours after the injury - and an excellent surgeon.   But the advice I got on this board from Blue Belt and Texas Diesel concerning patient rehab made a huge difference.... I know that now.


Blue Belt... if you are still in the Phoenix area... my next meet is in Mesa on November 3rd at Westwood H.S.  gym -  the Masters Nationals.  We should be deadlifting by 2:00 p.m.    You are more-than-welcome to stop by.  



post #3758 of 11192

Biggfred thats the same school our state tourneys are in. i'll take that day off work and come watch you crush the competition! It will be nice to meet in person. TNT thank u for your suggestions. I acttually bought a home US called Intellect which cost about $1800 with the probe. I have used it religiously, it helps with the scar tissue and ROM on my repaired quad tendon but I haven't noticed any improvement on my non surgical tendon. When I went back to jiu jitsu I largely put focused rehab aside. Only so much time in a week. I thought the rolling grappling activity would replace the actual rehab stuff along with weights in the gym. One thing I learned....Jiu Jitsu is damn rough on the body! If you have one leg that isn't 100% no matter how u try to work around it u are likely to get injured. I seemed to have only added new injuries to the surgical leg. Probably rusked the jiu jitsu returning at 7 months. I am back to swimming and recumbent bike regularily and a bit more lifting, seems to have started some slow progress. Thanks everyone for any help u have given and good luck. I am very interested if anyone is experiencing patellar pain in their unruptured leg. So if anyone else here is please chime in. Biggfred if u aren't having any pain in the other leg I think u are fine. I had pain in both patellar tendons for years before mine popped. Its why I stopped heavy squats and became a grappler. Squats were my fav lift.

post #3759 of 11192

Blue Belt,

    I noticed a number of the Jiu Jitsu players in the London Olympics

were using K-Tape (Kinesiology). Do you have any experience with it

and do you know the tape patterns for our injury?

                                                                      All The Best,


post #3760 of 11192

20 weeks and have been signed off by physio!! 

That's it then, all down to me from now on, unless something goes wrong. It will probably be another 20 weeks before I'm fully back on form I think.

I'd say the basic message is not to fight the pain - if it hurts then stop it and put your foot up. 


I'm impressed by the totally free of charge UK NHS service I've received, starting with prompt ambulance rescue (rush hour traffic jams and deep snow!) and then the operation 20 hours later. Splints, crutches, wheelchair, big bag of painkillers, all free.The treatment at every stage has been sensible and economical - just enough without being extravagant. Much more would have been available had I needed it, such as home help.

Physio consisted entirely of exercises for me to do, no "treatments" of any kind or expensive apparatus.


Have been out on the bike a few times. Using low gears a lot but managed to overtake some mountain bikers on a local hill! 


Hope you all get well soon. This group has been really useful, thanks all.

Edited by skip intro - 8/29/12 at 1:00pm
post #3761 of 11192

Calhiker, yeah I have done it several times. It provides temporary relief and there are specific patterns for the quad tendon. The tape stays on when exposed to water and sweat as long as the skin surface is clean dry and free of any recent creams etc...not sure if there is any real "healing" properties. I haven't studied it enough but I kinda think its a fad sort of thing. I seem to get as much relief from applying equiblock or similar creams which is a quicker process. Some people swear by the Kinestho tape.

post #3762 of 11192

Id like every newbie to read Biggfred's recent post seriously. I was in PT the day after surgery(per my OS) and I started weight training at 4 months, again per my OS, I was deadlifting 205 at 5 months and I am no power lifter.....the result, Fred and I are around the same time out from surgery and he is clearly way ahead of me. I can't squat diddly today and seem to have accumulated new injuries. I believe I was too damn inpatient(but this was pretty much supported by my OS and PT) I probably pushed too hard too early being thick headed I just couldn't sit still. I don't think I did myself any favors. Take Fred's advice, please.

post #3763 of 11192

Age: 51

History: Lots of physical work and heavy weightlifting over lifetime

Complete Quad Tendon Rupture: March 14

First Surgery: April 13

Second Surgery: August 21


Hey folks, I had my second surgery last week. The surgeon opened 3 portals and shaved a LOT of scar tissue, some of it went way up into my quad. He then performed a manipulation and told me he was able to bend it all the way. Not too painful recovery, I can feel the atrophied muscles that were stretched, the areas where he was working, etc. I started back on the Dynasplint immediately and back into PT 48 hours later. Before the second surgery I was at 68 degrees ROM, 9 days after surgery I'm now at 78 degrees ROM.


My knee and muscles feel different now after the second surgery. The pain during PT has transferred higher up on my knee and I get pain in my soft tissue now. Before the surgery the PT would push my leg and it would have a definite stopping point, like it was impossible mechanically to go any more. That is gone now. The PT says there does not feel like a stopping point now and only stops when I am screaming in pain. I take Norco or Percoset before I go in, but I am still hitting a level 9 pain threshold while they are bending it and when I start to yell and the PT backs off.


I know this is very soon after the surgery but I had an expectation that I would immediately go over 90 degrees ROM after surgery. I am getting discouraged and am thinking that this thing is never going to flex much again. It still feels very stiff when I stand up after sitting for a while or get out of bed. I know some of you on this forum have had a second arthroscopic surgery with manipulation and had success. Am I rushing this too much? Did take a while after the second surgery before you noticed the difference and got more ROM? Since the scar tissue is no longer an issue and since the doctor was able to bend it completely, what is preventing it from bending now?

post #3764 of 11192


Complete Left Tendon Rupture: May 26TH

Surgery: July 3RD



@QT 159


I have to say, I know where you're coming from, I'm 12 weeks post op and have been having Physio for 6 weeks now and I'm only up to 85° ROM so far. and I definitely seem to have a point where my knee just wont go past. I saw my OS last week who said I should be pushing it harder even though i told him that it is excruciating to push it any harder than I'm doing now ( got to say I'm not too impressed with him) I had an X-ray at the time and he told me that all looks well, but it would seem to me that i possibly have a build up of scar tissue and may have to have something done about it.....though i don't really want to go through another op if it can be helped!

post #3765 of 11192
I second the advice from Fred. Recovery from this injury takes time. You've got to let it heal. Then you can get after ROM. His comments about pain not being our friend are spot on. If our PT makes you scream, you need a different PT. My experience was that I needed to first focus on regaining ROM, then I could work on strength.
post #3766 of 11192



This is getting very frustrating!, I saw my physio today, i'm at 80° which, i was at last week, so no progress in the last week. He told me that i get no more ROM in two weeks then he will refer me back to my OS. I realise that not everybody gets good ROM quickly but it seems as though there is something physically stopping my knee from bending any further.


With regards to what Fred says about "pain not being your friend", well, i get two physio appointments per week: one on tuesdays in the hydro pool with a female PT who seems to enjoy inflicting pain; and one on a friday with male PT who is slightly less of a sadist, but over the last two weeks they have both hurt me pretty bad, which has put me of doing any excercises at home due to lingering pain.


This lack of ROM is really getting to me as i was hoping to get back to work by now, but due to the fact that i have to use ladders; frequently use stairs and generally do a lot of walking in my job, then it is out of the question at the moment, so it maybe time for a change of career.

post #3767 of 11192

I just saw doctor again. He reiterated that 10 days ago during the manipulation he had my knee bent back at 150 degrees (same as my good leg). I asked if it is not scar tissue what is preventing it from bending and he thought there might be fluid in the knee so he tried to extract but found very little. He said the tissue is still swollen so it may take some more time to let that go down, but said I should definitely be getting a lot more ROM after a manipulation. He injected a steroid to help reduce the swelling and said to wait 3 days and to just keep working it, stretching and strengthening and it should start moving better. If a lot of time goes by and the ROM is still not good he said he can do another manipulation. I like the attitude of - no matter what happens we can fix it...


Thanks for the advice on the pain. I will tell the PT to back off, it is mostly my fault as I have been telling them to push me as far as I can take it. I guess I am still impatient!

post #3768 of 11192

Hello All


From Georgetown Ontario


Male 60 years old,

Retired Law Enforcement

Total left quad rupture October 6th 2011..slipped on a hill at the golf course

Surgery October 14, 2011, Brampton Civic Hospital


I have been reading all of these blogs since last year.  I envy those who can heal and get back to a normal routine in up to 4 months. I was in a restraint for 6 weeks, then a hinged brace until January 5th 2012.  I even slept with that damn thing on..thankfully I never experienced the pain that others have felt..I have had full ROM for several months now and have cut back on the PT from 3 times a week to once a week. 


I still have difficulty walking down slopes and stairs.  I have a "clicking" on the left side of my leg and have a noticeable bump on my knee where the OS reattached the tendon..(does this sound familiar to anyone else)


I have been able to play golf once a week for the past couple of months but have not walked the courses yet.  I wear an elastic brace for added support (and security).  I stay away from the courses with large hills.


There were times when I thought that I would never be able to put my socks on by myself.  My wife was there every minute of the day to help me shower, dress and drive me around.  Without her I'm sure I would have had to go to a rehab centre. 


Too all the new and older "Quad Rippers"  good luck and hope you have a speedy recovery. 


Georgetown Frank   

post #3769 of 11192




I am a male 59 when I ruptured my left quad by slipping on beach rocks, on July 3rd 2011. Surgery on July 13th, locked straight for 6 weeks, wore brace for another 8 weeks with different degree settings. I still have a large area where the tendon was attached also. I also have clicking and pain sometimes. To answer a question for someone else, I also have pain in my good knee. It started when it was doing the majority of getting me up and down. 

Edited by beachcomber - 9/1/12 at 8:19pm
post #3770 of 11192

Having just had a repair in the UK privately (covered by my work health insurance) as the wait on the NHS was going to be too long- had the misfortune of slipping on a path while on holiday in Devon and was seen there in A&E but could not get a referral to the orthopaedic surgeon from my GP because the receptionist would not allow me to talk to the GP on the phone and insisted I had to return and see the GP in person. The irony was that when we did eventually get back I ended up having a telephone appointment anyway  and the referral to orthopaedics that the receptionist allegedly faxed to the local  hospital never arrived and I had to go to the GP surgery and pick up a copy and take it into the hospital myself. Privately referred  I saw the orthopaedic surgeon in under a week and had an MRI the same day and was in for surgery within 3 days.


What I would say that post op the pain was absolutely unbelievable, I was given oral pain relief paracetamol/ibuprofen/oromorph but because I had post operative vomiting I was essentially without any pain relief for about 8 hours until they finally gave me an IVI antiemetic to stop the vomiting and then IVI paracetamol and oromorph by mouth- I was finally approaching comfortable after 12 hours post op, the pain was so excruciating I am going to suggest to the orthopod that he should recommend a narcotic drip initially for people who have this procedure- that is what my mother had in Australia for  her hip replacement which she described to me as virtually pain free.


I now have a backslab on with my cricket bat brace- due to have it removed in 10 days time then hopefully will have an articulated brace.

post #3771 of 11192
Full right quad tendon rupture while walking up a hill 8/24/12 surgery 8/29/12 in full leg cast for three weeks will see surgeon then for cast replacement. 59years old ,40 years of construction work, skier very active before rupture. Knee was painfully for months before rupture tried to work through thinking it was arthritis. Any suggestions?
post #3772 of 11192

17 days post surgery for full quad tear right leg. First shower (after weeks of sponge baths) today - feel clean! Used transfer bench in tub, Left brace on until I was in tub then took it off remaining mindful not to bend knee. Wore surf shoe for grip in tub. Dried off and put brace on again before leaving tub. Scary part was standing from transfer bench. I removed my surf shoes because the rubber soles were slipping on the tile. Made sure bottoms of feet were completely dry, floor too, before using good leg (?) to bring me up to standing and the walker.


Fear of falling is a major concern. Those of you who have done therapy in pools what have you found to be helpful to remain stable on the wet surfaces surrounding the pool? Prior to injury I wore flip-flops or walked barefoot very carefully. Now, I'm hesitant to do either. What works best? Thanks. - Marc

post #3773 of 11192

Padre  18 weeks post op


Don't know if others have noted this:  Since I have been able to get back to full time work, and seeing PT twice a week, with daily exercises, including cycling (I don't have enough ROM to make a full revolution, so pedal with my heel on injured leg), I've noticed I've been incredibly tired at the end of the day. Sometimes going home, eating supper and going to bed.

Otherwise, have pretty consant 120 degree ROM, swelling after standing, walking, etc., but diminishes with ice, strength slowly returning, little or no pain, but rather constant soreness in both repaired knee and the other.

Feels great to get back to cycling and walking and working, but the price is exhaustion.



post #3774 of 11192

13 Weeks post op


Activepadre; Ever since I had my cast off 6 weeks ago I have been trying to get out and about and be active to get fit again, due to being laid up for 6 weeks and putting on over a stone in weight, the one thing I do find is that even if I only walk about for an hour to an hour and a half, then I'm exhausted by the end of the day, so you're not alone there my friend, keep it up, you'll get there.

Edited by StevieP - 9/2/12 at 4:40pm
post #3775 of 11192

Hi everybody!

Finally I am 4 weeks after surgery. 120 Rom, driving car, can walk without hinges at home (straight leg). Able to raise my heel when on the back. 30 min walk in the swimming pool, knee swallowed lightly. Doing some ex for upper body.  So very normal life for old lady. But I am a 65 y o guy 200 pound and use to be very active. Working in the office every day. Hard to be chain to the chair

Good luck and speedy recovery for everybody


post #3776 of 11192


  I used a nonslip pad in both tub and shower, a lot easier than

dealing with shoes and it worked well until I got my confidence


                                                      All The Best,


                                                      10 weeks Post-op

post #3777 of 11192

Calhiker, is there a particular nonslip pad that you used? Thanks. - Marc (Mettaman)

post #3778 of 11192


  I can not remember the name but it is a non slip shower/tub mat from

Bed Bath & Beyond and has suction cups on the bottom. It will give you

a lot more stability.

                                                    All The Best,


post #3779 of 11192

Hey folks, I FINALLY hit 90 degrees ROM! It has been a long day coming (5 months and 2 surgeries). All of the physical therapists were giving me high-5s as they have all been working very hard along with me to get there. I know there is still a long way to go but this is a milestone and gives me more motivation to keep pushing it. I have been using the leg extension machine and the leg press machine at the gym to help stretch my knee and soon I will start on the bike. Talk soon.

post #3780 of 11192

QT 159



that's very encouraging to hear, but can you tell me, do you get major pain while trying to stretch the tendon?, because that is my biggest hold back at the moment.

I get excruciating pain when trying to stretch it, and i'm finding it difficult to push myself whilst at home, and I have now been stuck at 80-85° for two weeks!.

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