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Author Topic: Patella fracture while recovering from ACL reconstruction. Recovery time??  (Read 340 times)

Offline Mxline167

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Wanted to see if anyone has had the same problem. Was 10 weeks post opp from acl reconstruction using patellar tendon, was walking down stars and slipped which resulted in traversed patella fracture. Had surgery 1/18/17.  Just trying to get some info and what recovery will be looking like!!

Offline Liblet

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Re: Patella fracture while recovering from ACL reconstruction. Recovery time??
« Reply #1 on: February 13, 2017, 03:22:04 PM »
Hi, sorry to hear about the fracture.  Was it displaced and needing surgery?  Patella fractures take an awfully long time to heal.  When I broke mine in November, all the advice I got was to be patient.  Everyone's story with this break is different.  Have you been put in a fixed brace, if so for how long?  My fracture was comminuted and now just over 3 months later, I am walking (without aids or a brace), albeit slowly, with the feeling that my leg doesn't really belong to my body!  One of the main problems with this fracture is the Quad muscle loses all its tension and strength and I think this will take months and months and may never be the same as the other leg.  I still get some pain, especially at night and have to take medication.  I am doing physio every day (homework), only see the physio once a week.  I also go to hydrotherapy 3 times a week, I think this has really helped and if you can get to a hydrotherapy pool, I really would recommend it.  When I have been exercising and the knee starts to swell and hurt, I use a cryocuff system, brilliant.

Good luck and be patient and try not to do too much too soon.

Offline Mxline167

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Re: Patella fracture while recovering from ACL reconstruction. Recovery time??
« Reply #2 on: February 13, 2017, 08:35:28 PM »
Hey Liblet, thanks for the reply,
So it was displaced, had surgery on 1/18 2 pins and wire. I had full range of motion from my previous acl surgery which was good but my quads was still pretty weak. I will be 4 weeks post op tomorrow and have doc app Thursday. So hopefully everything is healing ok. But yes I'm learning that PATIENCE is key.. Just gets really tuff after being out since November. Also I am in straight leg brace and on crutches with minimal weight bearing. Doc says I can go back to work by middle of May, I'm an electrician, so hope that is realistic!!

Offline Liblet

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Re: Patella fracture while recovering from ACL reconstruction. Recovery time??
« Reply #3 on: February 14, 2017, 04:18:51 PM »
Hi,  Good luck with the doc's appt.  Please don't panic when they take you out of your straight leg brace because you will almost certainly have lost ROM and even more Quad muscle.  It will come back slowly.  I am now on 125-130 ROM 3.5 months out and I have really worked at it.  Also you probably won't be able to walk up and down stairs normally, this takes some time.  I am just starting to go up in a relatively normal fashion (about 7 steps at a time) but there is no way I can go down normally.  I have been told this could take a good year or even never be achieved!!  I am sure you will be able to go back to work in May but I would probably avoid any ladders!  Good luck, let me know how you get on.

Offline Buckeyegirl80

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Re: Patella fracture while recovering from ACL reconstruction. Recovery time??
« Reply #4 on: February 15, 2017, 09:39:39 PM »
Hey there,
 
Good Luck at the doctor this week.  It will be weird to take the brace off, but that is progress. 

I am 6 months out from breaking my left patella into 5 pieces.  I had surgery for 2 pins & wire and was in an immobilizer for 7 weeks.  I was weight bearing, but no bending at all.  I lost a lot of quad strength over that time for sure.

I started PT at 8 weeks post surgery and was able to get to about 110 ROM, which took about 8 weeks.  Once I started therapy, I was walking very well (not fast), but minimal limp.  PT was a huge help on getting movement & strength back. 

The hardware was hindering me going further with my ROM, due to the pain and tightness I had with  PT and bending my knee.  I actually had surgery last week to remove the hardware and I feel that it is a success so far.  Of course, I'm not bending much yet, due to stitches, but the tightness and pain is better already. 

Good Luck and it does take patience to get through it.  I was surprised at the time & work it took to get back to a normal routine.   

Lisa

Online iamhealing

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MXLine-- I am the patella fracture story you don't want to hear.

I fractured into 3 pieces had pins and wires to put together.

My doc was very conservative with me and kept me at 0 flexion for at least 2 months. But I had weight bearing as tolerated from beginning.

Are you using a cpm -continuous passive motion machine. I wish I had as people seem to start therapy with a nice range of motion about 60.

I started PT with a very low rom, can't recall exactly maybe in 20-30.  At 4 months , I have worked so hard just to get to 68 and it was a huge strain to get there. Pain in physical therapy worry they would break my leg.

I also have lateral patellar femoral incongruity after the surgery and this is distressing as it grinds.

So I am off to see a specialist soon about the lack of progress and the incongruity.

My advice do passive motion machine if available to you.


Online iamhealing

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LIblet--you mentioned hydrotherapy as helping you- I really need some progress with ROM. Could you describe what you do in the water on this thread or start another here?
A million thanks in advance.

Offline Liblet

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Hi,  It is very difficult to advise as everyone is different and their progress can be slower or faster.  First of all I checked with my OS that I could start hydrotherapy and he was happy for me to start at about 2 months.  I did a great deal of research and managed to find classes, which are properly supervised with a Osteopath designing the exercises and an instructor in the pool to make sure that the exercises are being done correctly.  I also checked with my physio that the exercises were correct for my level of recovery.  Cycling in the deep end seems to be the most helpful for ROM.  Also the water must be warm, so that the muscles can relax and you don't get cold.  I don't know whereabouts you are, I am in UK.  Do your research and check with your OS that this form of treatment is right for you at this time.  Good luck.

Online iamhealing

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Liblet thanks for your response.  I was cleared for hydrotherapy sometime ago but it was felt PT on land would give better results at the time.

Now where PT on land is just too painful to endure (I think scar tissue is blocking progress), I just have to try something else though I will see an arthrofibrosis specialist very soon.

When you say cycling in the deep end - were you able to do this when your rom was more limited? Or, is that only possible when you can go fully round?

 

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