EpicSki › The Barking Bear Forums › Ski Training and Pro Forums › Fitness, Health, Nutrition, Injury, and Recovery › ACL Reconstruction: Patellar or Hamstring Graft?
New Posts  All Forums:Forum Nav:

ACL Reconstruction: Patellar or Hamstring Graft? - Page 2

post #31 of 54
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by MEfree30 View Post
Quote:
Originally Posted by JamminSki View Post
Can someone recommend an ACL reconstruction specialist in the Chicago area who does both Patellar and Hamstring grafts?

My regular ortho referred me to someone who does both, but he's not in-network, so trying to figure out how to find other specialists in this area.
From my experience (surgery in Nov '08), many Docs seem to have their own personal preference...I ended up picking my Doc because he was the only one in the area who does double bundle reconstruction (which intuitively seems superior to me than the traditional single graph technique although there is not long term data yet) and I felt comfortable with him.

Yes, this is also what I'm looking into having done. It makes the most sense to try and mimic the original ACL as much as you can. But yeah, new methods need time to prove their success.

post #32 of 54
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by num View Post
Hey Jammin, sorry to hear your situation. I missed this thread until pointed this way by Snowfan. I live in Chicago and just this summer had an ACLR using a 4 strand hamstring (and gracilis) autograft.

My doctor, who I'd definitely recommend, is named Chadwick Prodromos. He runs an ortho clinic, the Illinois Sports Medicine and Orthopedic Clinic in Glenview and also has an office in Chicago. He only does hamstring grafts, and on the site he explains his reasoning, as well as comparing the various types of grafts.

He's full of information and dedicated to passing it on to patients, a trait I really appreciate in a guy I pay to cut me open Here's the patient's comprehensive guide to the acl and here's the main knee page with links to various bits of information.

 

Hey Num, thanx for that info. Yup, I found out about Dr. Prodromos using search. I appreciated all the detail he has put on there on Hamstring vs Patellar and the case for Hamstring. I'm scheduled to go see Dr Bach at Rush Ortho and was referred to him as he does does Patellar and Hamstring, so will see what he has to say and go from there.

post #33 of 54

I tore my ACL early this month.  Because I also have a fracture of the tibial plateau, I need to wait for surgery.  Has anyone skied without the ACL?

post #34 of 54

skiersjp,

 

I skied for a couple hours after complete tear. Subluxated (dislocated) once and tore my meniscus. That added to my recovery time, and cost of surgical repair. (NO INSURANCE).

 

SOME people opt not to have the surgery and ski on the ACL-less knee. In my case, after getting home, I subbed it 4 more times. In other words, my knee was unstable. NO WAY WOULD I EVER SKI ON AN ACL-less knee.

 

Maybe it works for some folks, but not for me. It can DEFINATELY multiply the damage to your knee, and is not worth it, especially considering the life-long damage potential, and cost to ATTEMPT to repair.

post #35 of 54

The first doc said I could try to ski 6 weeks out with the complete tear with the donjoy brace.  I got a second opinion from one of the top sports ortho's in the area who said the same thing.

post #36 of 54
Quote:
Originally Posted by ski=free View Post
Quote:
Originally Posted by MEfree30 View Post
From my experience (surgery in Nov '08), many Docs seem to have their own personal preference...I ended up picking my Doc because he was the only one in the area who does double bundle reconstruction (which intuitively seems superior to me than the traditional single graph technique although there is not long term data yet) and I felt comfortable with him.
Double bundle is very new. They started that technique because the acl is actually a "double bundle". Please post you progress from time to time. Haven't treated any yet myself. The thinking is you get more directional stability but from what I've read and it's not that much you aren't any less likely to re-tear. You may limit excessive wear though. But who knows? I guess we will in the years to come.
What graft did they use?

I got an allograft (cadaver)...Doc said he stayed away from these for a while, but disease risk has been greatly reduced.
 

 

I'm almost 11 weeks post-opt and have been doing fine other than some swelling that forced me to back off the PT last week.  No other major issues to speak of, but from time to time you do get a sensation that you don't know what to make of having never been through this before. 

 

At my 6 week, the PA said I would be cleared to snow shoe at 12 weeks and the Doc had previously told me that he likes 4-4.5 month min to ski after double bundle (vs 6 month min after traditional ACL reconstruction).  I'll have my 12 week follow-up next week and will try to post more then. 

 

My PT, who has had traditional repairs twice, seems to think well of the double bundle technique.  He says that there are no long term studies, but the hope is that the double bundle will lead to less degenerative joint disease (arthritis, which is more common in people with reconstructed ACLs).  He says that there has been some shorter term studies (=<5 years) that seem to support this conclusion.  His opinion is that it is best to wait closer to 1 year before skiing...

 

 

post #37 of 54
Quote:
Originally Posted by skiersjp View Post

I tore my ACL early this month.  Because I also have a fracture of the tibial plateau, I need to wait for surgery.  Has anyone skied without the ACL?

 

You don't need an ACL to do anything.  Steelers WR Hines Ward does not have an ACL in his left knee but yet can play football in the NFL.  He suffered his injury when he was 9 and since then his body has been able to adjust to the fact that he has an ACL deficient knee.  Obviously it is a lot easier for your body to make these adjustments when you are younger and still growing.  The question is not do you have an intact ACL, the question is do you feel stable on your knee.  Only you can answer that question.  Stability is not something that can be measured, it is something you feel.

post #38 of 54

Hey Jammin,

 

Was curious if you're PT'ing now before surgery?  I only saw it mentioned once in this thread to do PT before surgery which turned out to be a vital piece of the process for me.  Hope you can get something from my experience: 

 

I blew out my left knee's ACL, tore the meniscus and bruised the bones in the knee joint in April of '07 at Nationals.  I had surgery almost 1 month later (doc wanted swelling and such to go down first).  During that month I did PT visits 3x a week and then resumed this schedule the day after surgery.  All through the 'after surgery' PT sessions, my therapist kept saying how valuable the 'pre-surgery' PT was and pointed out the benefits to me often.  The response time to treatment and gaining strength was in his terms much quicker.  He did remind me, a lot too, that just 'cuz I had the great results and felt good, that the healinig time still took the normal expected range (the bone, etc. will only heal at a certain rate).  The hardest thing with PT was to just do PT.        

 

I had to make the same decision you're contemplating as to whether I'd use cadaver, hamstring or patellar.  I was lucky to work with one of the best groups in the nation here in the 'burgh and let the doc explain what each procedure was, the risks, rewards and describe what he though was best considering that I intended to return to racing and wanted to be better than when I got hurt.  He chose the patellar and I felt very confident in his decision and explanation.  I too didn't want the cadaver due to the risk of infection even though it's extremely low.  The other thing my doc did that seemed different is the lack of use of a brace.  He said he wanted my leg to have to learn to react normally from the get go and to not loose any proprioception stuff by relying on the brace.  I was all for this as I hated the brace.  

 

I was given the ok to start lifting weights again (no leg work) a month after surgery.  Was given the ok to lift 'normally' in August.  Actually did some hiking and 'soft' trail running in August too (trail running was not doctor approved, but i just had to test things out that day for some reason).  I was given clearance to return to mountain biking and any activity other than 'running down a wet, grassy hill' in early october (i waited until the spring to start trail running again).  I ended up on snow at least 2x a week all winter and ended the year with a 6 day on snow trip out West including a day of guide only at Silverton.  Day 6 i kind of pooped out, but overall was really pleased considering all the bad reports i was given about "you'll never be the same again", "you won't be able to ride/race again", "it will take a year to be able to enjoy yourself if you're lucky", etc.  Apparently those reports were wrong.   Know that I did use a specialist after the PT sessions were over who focused on helping folks with severe injuries to return to their expected levels of athletic performance.  So I did some more work (about x1-x2 a month through January) after my PT was done in September.

 

The only thing I felt 'less-than' with my leg at the end of the season was the strength endurance.  I was almost back to 'normal' levels of strength compared to before the injury, but definitlely had a lot of work still to do to get the stamina back.  The bonk at the end of my trip kind of clued me in to that deficiency.   

 

Last off -season I returned to normal mountain biking (xc and downhill) as well as trail running and have not had any problems.  I used to ice the knee after intense training sessions just as a precaution (occassionally follow this practice now - initially did this to avoid tendonitis for the patellar that got cut).  I do have a numb spot I guess for kneeling, but it's not uncomfortable or painful, nor do i really notice it any more.  The only deal that's not totally back or improved is mentally I still am cautious at times.  Usually though I get involved in the activity and forget about the leg and just go.  It's only when I have a big time crash that the little voice in the back of my head says 'watch out for your knee' while I'm in mid-crash.  So far the knee has held up extremely well, even through wipeouts.         

 

Cheers,

Jb

 

 

 

post #39 of 54

you can measure stability especially in the knee.

But I wouldn't ski without an acl for fear of dislocation.

The double bundle as I said earlier may prevent wear by having more rotational stability.

No matter what graft you choose it won't be fully intergrated or at full strength until after a year.

But, I would ski after 6 months with a brace for sure.

Every graft option has drawbacks. If there are 3000 doctors performing acl reconstruction you are likey to get 1000 in each camp. hs, patella and allograft.

post #40 of 54
Quote:
Originally Posted by ski=free View Post

you can measure stability especially in the knee.

How do you measure stability other than what a pt reports during a given activity?  You can measure the laxity in the knee very easily but increased laxity does not always mean decreased stability.

post #41 of 54

There is a relative dearth of good scientific data regarding ACL reconstructions, a disturbing state of affairs considering how common ACL injuries and surgeries are.

 

The best available evidence from observational studies shows higher failure rates at two years post-op with allografts (cadavers) compared with autografts, leading a recent reviewer to conclude that "the avoidance of allografting is prudent when possible in young athletes."

 

In general, there appear to be similar functional outcomes with either the patellar tendon or hamstring tendon graft, though the former is (surprise, surprise) associated with more pain upon kneeling and a higher rate of anterior knee pain.

 

The long-term outcome from double bundle reconstruction remains unknown.


Edited by Dr Rick - Thu, 05 Feb 09 01:21:20 GMT
post #42 of 54
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by MEfree30 View Post
Quote:
Originally Posted by ski=free View Post
Quote:
Originally Posted by MEfree30 View Post
From my experience (surgery in Nov '08), many Docs seem to have their own personal preference...I ended up picking my Doc because he was the only one in the area who does double bundle reconstruction (which intuitively seems superior to me than the traditional single graph technique although there is not long term data yet) and I felt comfortable with him.

 

 

 MEfree30,

After much research over these few days, double bundle is making more and more sense to me. I'm a mechanical engineer and to my mind, reconstructing the acl as similar as it was to its native state seems quite important in long term effectiveness.

 

Second to that, I see Quad Hamstring as the next best solution with Endobutton and Screw. Regarding Patella Tendon, firstly, the high incidence of long term knee pain and secondly, the reduced strength compared to Hamstring is thinking I dont really want this option.

 

I've figured I'm going to base my graft decision on what I think will be the best for the long term. I've already given up this whole year for recovery, so quick recovery time is not high on my priority list.

 

Regarding Double Bundle, I'm most unsure about how the bones' strength (Femur and Tibia) is after having 4 tunnels drilled in them compared to 2 tunnels for current single bundle Patella and Hamstring. I know new bone is supposed to grow into the tunnels within a couple months and should be maybe fully healed by 1 year, right? But obvisouly being the newest technique, there isn't long term data, but I wonder what the bone strength (femur and tibia) is going to be in the long term after being violated by a drill 4 times.

 

What do you think about that? How has your PT rehab been? Is it more conservative than a Patella Tendon rehab to allow longer time for healing of the soft tissue?

post #43 of 54
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Jibster View Post

Hey Jammin,

 

Was curious if you're PT'ing now before surgery?  I only saw it mentioned once in this thread to do PT before surgery which turned out to be a vital piece of the process for me.  Hope you can get something from my experience: 

 

I

Cheers,

Jb

 

 

 

 Jb, thanx for that detailed post. Yes, I started PT 1 week after injury and it is now 3 weeks. I really like my current therapist, she's been educating me a lot in PT and ortho in general (I'm the curious kind, I like to research everything that happens to me, like so many others). I know getting close to full range of motion is very helpful for post-op rehab; I'm up to 120 deg, working towards 140. I've gotten good balance back and quad strength is improving. Only today am I able to walk around without the slightest hint of a limp, albeit slowly. I can see now when people say you don't really need an acl since your body will adapt. But, I'd like to continue playing competitive racquetball and all that cutting could certainly use an acl.

 

post #44 of 54
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by ski=free View Post

The double bundle as I said earlier may prevent wear by having more rotational stability.


 Can you explain to me please how the PL (postero lateral) part of the ACL aids in rotational stability and what actually do we need that for in sports? It is obvious that the shorter length and direction of the PL anchors in both the femur and tibia angle it such that it prevents rotation?

 

Also, isn't the PCL angled similar to the PL part of the ACL? If so, is the PL just a back up to the PCL and not really needed, as in that's why so many people out there with current single bundle grafts seem to have success in all walks of life? even though many people complain about not feeling 100%...

 

I''d really to get this graft, but knowing a bit more about it would be great.

post #45 of 54
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Dr Rick View Post

There is a relative dearth of good scientific data regarding ACL reconstructions, a disturbing state of affairs considering how common ACL injuries and surgeries are.

 

The best available evidence from observational studies shows higher failure rates at two years post-op with allografts (cadavers) compared with autografts, leading a recent reviewer to conclude that "the avoidance of allografting is prudent when possible in young athletes."

 

In general, there appear to be similar functional outcomes with either the patellar tendon or hamstring tendon graft, though the former is (surprise, surprise) associated with more pain upon kneeling and a higher rate of anterior knee pain.

 

The long-term outcome from double bundle reconstruction remains unknown.


Edited by Dr Rick - Thu, 05 Feb 09 01:21:20 GMT

 Yup, that's what I've found. There are many scientific papers posted where their details and data are posted to convince the rational mind.

 

And yes, from what I've read about allografts is that they can be weaker in the long term and take at least 2 years to fully integrate into the body, being foreign tissue. So going with autograft, the ease of Hamstring harvesting now seems to be a better choice than the trauma caused to the Patella during that harvesting. The least trauma caused to the body adds to a quicker recovery. And yes, the high incidence of knee pain in Patella graft patients is enough to convince me to go with Hamstring. 5 friends who've had the Patella graft all complain about knee pain and not feeling 100% about their knee.

 

 

Regarding not having long term data yet, I think to me, if the case for double bundle makes rational sense, then the risk should be lower. It definitely seems to be the way of the future and might be commonplace in 10 years but to get there... people need to generate data. 

 

I'll tell you what though, it's already been interesting to peer into the scientific medical world and its similarities to the establishment of physics and all other major sciences.

post #46 of 54

Bummer, sorry to hear that you hurt your knee! You will get though it though!

 

I completely ruptured my ACL last season, and gave up the rest of the season to get it reconstructed (allo-graft, by one of the the best surgeons in Boston). There was nothing else wrong with my knee other than not having an ACL - and the associated instability. Pre-surgery I went to PT and re-gained full range of motion and a normal walking gait without crutches/cane. The first few weeks of rehab post-surgery were really tough, and then being on crutches was a huge hassle (especially during business travel). The rest of the rehab was better from the standpoint that I saw measureable improvements week by week, but it was pretty long and grueling. I am skiing with a CTI brace this season per the Surgeon's instructions (maybe next season too depending on his prognosis). I started skiing again about 8 months after the surgery, and now it's just over 11 months from the surgery.

 

I have skied 33 days so far this season, the past 19 on Kneebindings which should afford me extra ACL protection. I also skied the first 14 days in soft boots (Lange 80 RRS) - before I saddled up on the Kneebindings and returned to medium stiffness boots (Nordica Speedmachine 110). Last season I was in stiff boots when I got hurt (Lange WCFit 130). My first ski day out was early in the season during a snowfall in generally poor conditions, and I was skiing so scared that day it made me nuts. Because of the poor visibility I skied with the "brakes-on" for a few runs trying to always see a good place to turn next, before I finally called it quits - and said phew, first day done. It was horrible, exhausting, and like nothing I remembered being a longtime skier. The next and second ski day the visibility was much better, and I had a breakthrough where I learned that if could relax enough to let the skis run and connect (carve) my mind went on "auto-pilot" and skiing again became fun. After that skiing became more normal when visibility was good, and I could see well enough to ski faster and still pick and plan the next place to turn. Now I'm fine with either good or poor visibility, and mixing it up rather than shopping for turns! I am again skiing at a high level.

 

In retrospect the soft "re-hab" boots were a good starting point not only due to inherent protection they provided but in that they forced me to move around A LOT over my skis, and re-train my muscles. The other thing that was good about the soft boots was that they took my mind off of what could go wrong and put it onto: "wow, look at how far I can bend these boots now". An inner skiing drill of sorts...

 

Good Luck and don't give up!

post #47 of 54
Quote:
 MEfree30,

After much research over these few days, double bundle is making more and more sense to me. I'm a mechanical engineer and to my mind, reconstructing the acl as similar as it was to its native state seems quite important in long term effectiveness.

 

Second to that, I see Quad Hamstring as the next best solution with Endobutton and Screw. Regarding Patella Tendon, firstly, the high incidence of long term knee pain and secondly, the reduced strength compared to Hamstring is thinking I dont really want this option.

 

I've figured I'm going to base my graft decision on what I think will be the best for the long term. I've already given up this whole year for recovery, so quick recovery time is not high on my priority list.

 

Regarding Double Bundle, I'm most unsure about how the bones' strength (Femur and Tibia) is after having 4 tunnels drilled in them compared to 2 tunnels for current single bundle Patella and Hamstring. I know new bone is supposed to grow into the tunnels within a couple months and should be maybe fully healed by 1 year, right? But obvisouly being the newest technique, there isn't long term data, but I wonder what the bone strength (femur and tibia) is going to be in the long term after being violated by a drill 4 times.

 

What do you think about that? How has your PT rehab been? Is it more conservative than a Patella Tendon rehab to allow longer time for healing of the soft tissue?


 

Can't answer all your questions, but having meniscus repair (which I did NOT have) seems to slow initial rehab the most (but is better long term if it takes than the trim which I had).  Each doctor seems to have their own protocol and some PT will push more than others.  With that said, my Doc gave me the impression that he has been more aggressive clearing double bundle repairs to ski in as little as 4 to 4.5 months compared to 6 month min for traditional technique.  Overall, he is described as being pretty conservative and I know that I was not suppose to straighten my leg by lifting my foot (leg extension motion) for the first 6 weeks (which I think is common protocol for single bundle also).  

 

My PT has gone well other than some swelling.  Overall, I think I think my progress has been above average although I think my swelling has also been a bit more than average...still trying to figure out if this is due to certain exercises (or possible doing certain exercises wrong), but my swelling went way down last week when I was told to rest it by the PA.  I have a few other posts about this that you can search.

 

As far as the additional drilling goes, I can't give you a very scientific answer, but I don't see this as being a problem for me.  I am much more concerned about retearing my ACL (or tearing the ACL in my other knee) than breaking a bone (which I have never done as far as I know).  My understanding is that the two "screws" on top are "bone screws" that will completely fuse with the existing bone.  There was a bit of very mild pain where they threaded them through that I could feel the first week or two after surgery, but I am completely unaware of them now.  The two metal screws are located at the only scar line.  Not much pain with these either, but I remember feeling like the bone was indented around/just below the scar line but I hadn't thought about it at all recently until reading your post.

 

My PT, who seems to advocate the double bundle said that some doctors have said they don't want to (learn to) do it because of the problem of having two screws close together if someone tore the new ACL.  Apparently, it is likey that in removing the two screws, the piece of bone inbetween will also likely come out, which means that you would need to "bone pack" it and let it heal before you could put in new screws if a second surgery was required.   

post #48 of 54
Thread Starter 

 

Quote:
Originally Posted by CHRISfromRI View Post

 

Bummer, sorry to hear that you hurt your knee! You will get though it though!

 

 

In retrospect the soft "re-hab" boots were a good starting point not only due to inherent protection they provided but in that they forced me to move around A LOT over my skis, and re-train my muscles. The other thing that was good about the soft boots was that they took my mind off of what could go wrong and put it onto: "wow, look at how far I can bend these boots now". An inner skiing drill of sorts...

 

Good Luck and don't give up!

 

Hey Chris, thanx for the details on how to get back on skis. Yeah, the soft boots wound like a good way to get back into it. I know I'll be skiing next season and will train to make sure I'm in the best possible physical condition before hitting the slopes. Cheers.

 

Quote:
Originally Posted by MEfree30 View Post

 

 

 

My PT, who seems to advocate the double bundle said that some doctors have said they don't want to (learn to) do it because of the problem of having two screws close together if someone tore the new ACL.  Apparently, it is likey that in removing the two screws, the piece of bone inbetween will also likely come out, which means that you would need to "bone pack" it and let it heal before you could put in new screws if a second surgery was required.   

 

 Yup, that's the answer I got too. Re-visiting a double-bundle in case of tearing of the graft would be a nightmare surgery, needing bone plugs, waiting 6 months and then going back in. I guess take care of it and hope it doesn't retear. Good luck

post #49 of 54
Thread Starter 

Just wanted to update this thread with what's been happening:

 

I finally decided against double-bundle and went with allograft quad hamstring, mainly because the only double-bundle doctor near me was in Pittsburgh (Dr. Freddie Fu) and dealing with surgery in another city looked be quite a hassle and then rehab would be complicated since I wouldnt be close to the doctor (back in Chicago) and checkups would have to be handled with a local doctor.

 

And talking with my hamstring doc, who was very forthcoming and clear with answers to all my questions, said the risk of revisiting a double-bundle graft because of a torn ACL is one of the main reasons he doesn't recommend it. He also said, yes, it's a new technique and without long term data, anyone getting it done now or within the next few years are sort of being guines pigs in providing data for the results.

 

I would have gone double-bundle if the doctor was local. Not having that option, I settled with Dr. Prodromos and his quad-hamstring closed-loop endobutton technique. He's provided data and arguments on his site showing the benefit of hamstring over patellar and the high quality of his results convinced me to go with him along with agreeing with his methodolgy.

 

Had surgery on Feb 19th and it's now been 5 weeks post-op. He said his rehab is very non-agressive compared to most rehabs and especially compared to patellar graft rehabs. So right away after surgery, he was looking for full extension, which I could do on my first visit post-op and then wanted to work agressively to get range of motion to 120 degrees. Went to rehab about 5 times post-op and worked to get to 120 degrees, which i managed by the 11th day post-op and then I was dismissed to continue working on range at home. The 120 degrees at the PT was achieved with crazy amounts of pain. They would definitely qualify as torture masters in another life, but I knew it was good for me, cause I felt much better after each session.

 

So, now I have to wait for 3 months post-op before starting Phase 2, the strenghtening exercises. Seems very different compared to most other rehabs, since people are usually starting strenghtening right away along with range, but Dr. Prodromos says he likes to give more time for the soft-tissue graft to heal in the bone tunnels before starting aggressive strengthening. He says the other techniques that strengthen right away likely lead to getting back to form much sooner but also sacrifice a bit of graft strength.

 

Along with daily range of motion exercises at home, I'm doing some simple isometric strengthening: lying on back with legs at 90 deg on the wall and pushing against the wall with the injured leg and tensing the musles.

 

Once I start strengthening exercises, PT said he'll work first on Hamstring strength and then Quads.

 

I was on crutches for a full 4 weeks and was anxiously waiting to get off them and get back to my cane and now I can walk even without the cane for short distances at very slow speeds, but regular gait with the cane is slowly coming back. The freedom to be off crutches is amazing. I can finally carry things with my free hand , makes eating so much easier.

 

I'll post updates as they happen in the interest of shedding info on the rehab for hamstrings.

post #50 of 54
Thread Starter 

Some pictures:

 

Changing the dressing on the wounds on 1st day post-op. Large wound is the drill entry site and location of the tibial screw anchoring the graft. The other 3 small wounds on the knee are the arthroscopic holes made for assisting with the surgery. The had only 2 staples each, but the big wound and the underside wound where the hamstring was harvested from had 6-7 staples each. Removing the staples on the 4th day wasn't that bad except for the harvest wound, which has much softer skin than the front side of the knee and that hurt like crazy. The wounds are healing nicely and I think the staples lead to a smaller long term scar than using sutures. Doc says almost no scar is possible.

 

Using this cool little machine at the PT clinic, which really helped getting range of motion back. It allowed me to control how much strain I put on the leg. It's a simple hydraulic press.

 

post #51 of 54

How's it feeling now, Jammin?

 

I remember that machine from pt. Lots of fun toys :)

post #52 of 54
Thread Starter 
Just wanted to post an update:
It's been 5 months since surgery and I'm feeling great. Have another month left of PT. My hamstring muscles are back to 100% strength (compared to the good leg) and now this next month, PT is focusing on balance, stability and the quads. He said you can can do whatever you want except no running and jumping, but I did finally go dancing this past weekend and felt great, all though not much leg work

Been riding my motorcycle for a while now and actually, it's less strain on the leg than driving, because the right leg is the least used limb on a bike compared to a car, where it's the most used limb (Im trying to rationalize it )

Last week, I think I was pushing it too much by getting on the elliptical and going for some good resistance for 30 mins, for some cardio and ended up with some pain around the patella (probably acute tendonitis), took it easy and pain went away a few days later and now doing less resistance with no pain. Doc said even with the Hamstring graft, about 20% can end up with tendonitis and I definitely dont want that.

Yeah, some fun exercises at rehab. I like the angled mini trampoline where you throw a ball balancing on one leg to the side and have to catch it again. Crab walks with resistance bands totally burn so good, oh those hip abductors... Getting close to being able to do full squats.


Planning for Jackson Hole next winter is already underway
post #53 of 54
At least you didn't have my experience:

Injured 3 days into a full Squaw pass, no insurance and judging from the extreme instability of the knee I may have had a partial tear of the lcl.

This was 3 years ago, last day in January 06.

Fast forward to this winter: I finally got so sick of not getting to ski for the better part of 4 seasons I bought an asterisk brace. I was actually fine, and really enjoyed my skiing. I went out later on a very inadvisable night after 12 inches of rain and dislocated the knee, tore more meniscus and trapped a portion of it inside the joint.

After I saw a lot of stars skiing down the hill, struggling to take off my (plug Lange) boots with Nordica lace-up liners (have to take off the shells and then the liners) on a cold, 15 deg. night and driving a manual vehicle (left knee injury) I stumbled to a friend's house to get some crutches.

Surgery was on 1/16, 3 days after the injury. Had hamstring autograft.

The doctor ok'ed me to go back to work 3 months later (I work in construction), and after the first couple hellish weeks I am doing fine. Unfortunately, I only have 30% or so of medial meniscus in my left knee (according to doc).

In the next couple years I'm going to start researching stem-cell meniscus reconstruction and looking for clinical trials once it looks like they have a good chance of success.
post #54 of 54

i just recently donated my hammie, and am now in the process of rehabbing.  it has been 2 months from the surgery date...

wanted to ask you how your hammie felt at this point in your operation...it is feeling a bit unstable (as can be expected,right?) at some point does this pass? can you describe your experience with your own knee?

New Posts  All Forums:Forum Nav:
EpicSki › The Barking Bear Forums › Ski Training and Pro Forums › Fitness, Health, Nutrition, Injury, and Recovery › ACL Reconstruction: Patellar or Hamstring Graft?