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Author Topic: Ruptured Quadriceps Tendon  (Read 379805 times)

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Offline AL-M

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Ruptured Quadriceps Tendon
« on: November 21, 2006, 10:28:31 AM »
Ruptured my quadriceps tendon 8 weeks ago. Had the op on day 2 and released from hospital on day 4 after weekend.
Fitted with back cast for first 2 weeks, then full cast for next 3 weeks. Now fitted with a knee brace set at 90 deg by consultant.
Doing exercises advised by PT to build up muscles which appear to be working but slow!!!!!. knee still swells up pretty badly at nights and aches a lot.
Initial target set by consultant and PT is 90 deg of knee bend and so far can get about 80/85 after some work (about 8/10 mins).
PT have advised to take off knee brace during time at home and only use it when walking about outside. I am seeing consultant next week so will wait
to see what he says. Everything seems to be going ok but would appreciate any experiences of other kneegeeks.
Thanks in advance.

Offline frederico

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Re: Ruptured Quadriceps Tendon
« Reply #1 on: November 29, 2006, 03:13:55 AM »
Glad to see some other individuals with a similar problem.  I just found this site, and am 13 weeks post-surgery for a quad tendon rupture.  I have been given the okay to wean myself off my IROM brace (adjustable hinge brace). I still wear it when working out in the yard, but for normal around the house and office I don't wear it.  When the snow flies, I may use it more.  My quad muscles are very weak. I am only up to doing leg extensions with 6 lbs. of wt. on the ankle.  That's up from 4 lbs the week before.  Very slow, but steady improvement.  My range of motion is good...about 130 degrees, and that seems to improve slowly as well. 
I have little discomfort now, just some stiffness if I sit too long. 
12 weeks seems to be the magic number...that's how long it takes the tendon to heal.  My P.T. and surgeon told me it will take another three months to get the muscles back... my P.t. says more like one year, since I am an avid bicycler. 


Offline AL-M

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Re: Ruptured Quadriceps Tendon
« Reply #2 on: November 29, 2006, 12:29:08 PM »
Thanks for the reply. Saw my consultant yesterday 27 nov. Says I can remove knee brace unless going for long walks. Much more comfortable. I can now get 90 degree knee bend with a bit of effort but hard to get more at moment.
interested in your comments about leg weights as that hasn't been mentioned yet (10 weeks). muscle build up going very slow. I've been told to expect 80% in about 4 months but full recovery could take 18 months!!. still using one crutch but can manage to get about the house without it. Can you tell me more about leg weights? is it safe to drive because i can switch between the pedals and press down on brake very hard?

Offline frederico

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Re: Ruptured Quadriceps Tendon
« Reply #3 on: November 29, 2006, 06:59:03 PM »
The ankle wt. thing I have wraps around the ankle with velcro and has 10, 1lb. wts. in it, so you can add wt. as you improve. I think I got it years ago at a sporting goods store.  I have various exercises my P.T. gave me. Sit on a bench and extend leg straight out. Lie on the floor and do whole leg raises. (up over your head)  Also, put small firm object behind knee, slightly bent, ( I use a 5 lb coffee can) and then do leg lifts.  This latter one is also lying on the floor.  I started out at about 10 weeks doing these with no wts., and then moving up 1-2 lbs. per week. It can't be rushed ! >:(

I have an automatic tranmission in my car, and my injured leg was the left one, (I'm in the US) so the hardest challenge was getting my leg through the door when it wouldn't bend much.  As far as applying a brake, I would try it out, if you are gaining some strength, it might be doable. You could always apply the parking brake in an emergency if its the lever type.  I found that my surgeon was very conservative about how much I should do, and I tended to do more, earlier than he thought I should.....so far it has been fine.

My P.T. says once you get to 90 degree bend the rest should come easy. 

It's nice to be able to share.......

Offline AL-M

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Re: Ruptured Quadriceps Tendon
« Reply #4 on: November 30, 2006, 09:10:40 AM »
Tks for the reply. Sounds like leg weights are a good idea. Will try to get some from my local sports shop.
Lucky you for it being the left leg. Mines the right and yes its hard getting it into the car (RHD) but once in I can manage the pedals ok.
can manage quite a few steps without crutches so will work on that a bit more. Tks agn for the interest. Will post again when something significant happens

Offline robwalk

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Re: Ruptured Quadriceps Tendon
« Reply #5 on: December 10, 2006, 05:04:27 AM »
I slipped and fell in June 2006, and went to the ER, they sent me home, in trying to get up the stairs, I fell and had to return to the ER. They admitted me for 2 days, and told me nothing was wrong with me, and sent me home. I was not able to extend my legs, or stand. Finally in July with the help of a home therapist I was able to get to an orthopedist, who did an MRI, and told me I had Bilateral Quadricep Tendon ruptures. Two weeks after that I was operated on, and spent 10 days in the hospital, 7 of those days in PT. I wore braces for about 3 months, and am now able to walk with the help of a cane, but mostly use the walker, since I have a balance problem, and live in San Francisco which is very hilly, and don't have a problem going up but going down is scary, and have fallen at home while doing exercises.

I guess my real concern is, do any of you have swelling in the knees, and the calf, and feet. I am fine when I wake up, but during the day of walking and sitting by the time I got to bed (and I dread going), my calfs and feel are very swollen,and when I arch my feet it feels as if they are so swollen I am not able to bend them. I just had an UltraSound and clots were ruled out where I fell, and according to my doctor I pulled a calf muscle, and my ankle, and heel were very bruised, which has not cleared up.

Would be interested to know if  any of you have the swelling in the knees to the feet, other than that I am ok, just started back to the gym, and am riding a bike, and walking on the treadmill, albeit at a very very slow pace, but better than nothing. I am 68 y/o.

I have been through bypass surgery, and this quadricep thing is worse.

Thanks for any replies.

Rob

Offline frederico

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Re: Ruptured Quadriceps Tendon
« Reply #6 on: December 10, 2006, 12:30:03 PM »
Rob, 
I have not had any swelling of my knee, lower leg or feet.  If your swelling is in both legs and it worsens as the day goes on - you may be retaining fluids, probably not directly related to the quad tendon surgery. You may want to ask your M.D. about that. 
« Last Edit: December 10, 2006, 03:00:49 PM by frederico »

Offline robwalk

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Re: Ruptured Quadriceps Tendon
« Reply #7 on: December 11, 2006, 09:15:38 PM »
Frederico, Many thanks for your reply. I have been to my Primary Care Physician about it, he is an endocronologist, and I am a diabetic, and sees nothing wrong with it..I notice during the day the knees are full of fluid, and as the day progresses it subsides, to the calf and the foot, but thanks I will keep pestering them until they can do something about it.
Rob

Offline AL-M

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Re: Ruptured Quadriceps Tendon
« Reply #8 on: December 18, 2006, 09:18:54 AM »
Re the knee swelling. Yes I get it every day. when I wake up the knee is normal but starts to fill with fluid when I start to move abolut. I can walk quite normally and at normal speed without a stick at first. However by the afternoon I slow down quite dramatically and limp a bit. I can get about without a stick but tend to limp a lot. Not a lot of pain now but aches every night.
I usually spend the evenings with the leg elevated to releive the swelling and yes I get calf swelling too. Its 12 weeks since the accident now and by all accounts am doing good but seems very slow going. I can drive ok which helps a lot. can't think of any advice to help with the swelling in fact would like to know what I can do to stop mine!!!!!! 

Offline robwalk

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Re: Ruptured Quadriceps Tendon
« Reply #9 on: January 02, 2007, 02:57:28 AM »
Al-M..the PT told me not to elevate my legs..but I will see my orthopedist on Jan 22 2007, and will inquire as to why I swell. I too seem to be progressing, but too slow for me..I have moved fast all my life..this is like stand still. I am back at the gym, and did fall on the treadmill, but was able to maintain until I could get the belt stopped, so did not go all the way down. I guess that is good sign, and as of 12/10 it was 6 months, but the doc already told me it could be 6 months to 1 year...and I am driving also. I can walk around the house without the aid of a walker or cane, however on the outside I panic, and feel as if I will fall..don't know how to overcome that.

Will let you know what the doc says.

Rob

Offline sjdean

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Re: Ruptured Quadriceps Tendon
« Reply #10 on: January 07, 2007, 11:57:32 AM »
Hi All,

Thought I'd check in and see how you were all doing.

My this board has certainly come alive.

For those who don't remember/know, I ruptured my quads tendon in April after a slip on the stairs.

3 months after that, I ruptured it again as I slipped in a car park.

The second time around was more horrendous for me given the timing of it. It happened in July, and obviously Autumn (with the rain) and Winter (with the ice) was just around the corner and I was extremely worried. And also, having a re-rupture in close succession caused me to lose a lot of strength and confidence.

Im happy to report now though that my strength is slowly returning. But my mental and physical energy is just dissipated. Im supposed to be trying to do some exercises at home, but Im really really too tired. And when I do try, my knee hurts. Not that bad, but enough to make me wanna just cry and give up.

The scar is worse compared to last time, it's still very red in places, and this is six months afterwards. But Im seeing an excellent physiotherapist department at George Eliot hospital in England who are absolutely fantastic. I've been referred onto knee classes and have done the beginners class - which is basically a co-ordinated controlled gym session with stepping machines, wobble boards, rowing machines and cycles.

I've finished that and am just awaiting my referral to the intermediate where apparently there will be running and jumping. I hope it's not that much, because, I really cannot run.

I still don't have full range of movement, my knee is comfortable. I just still really lack a lot of strength, and I can't kick properly. I still have to be careful with what I do because it does hurt my knee every now and again.

So so though, everythings going well. At least I havent fallen over again and at least the main thing, I can slowly feel the strength coming back. I feel more glued to the pavement, even though I still have a problem going up stairs leading with the bad leg.

Fortunately, unlike some of you, my knee isn't swelling. It is swollen compared to the good knee, but it's a sort of constant swelling. The thing im most concerned about is how it feels with my hands. Compared to last time, it feels sort of bony and jarry, it's like I can feel protrusions or edges of bone and just above my knee cap, there's this sort of pronounced hollow, then a bit further up a big lump of something. Doesn't feel right. And trying to do leg extensions sends a shooting jarring pain up the right side of my thigh.

Just been reading through what everyone has been saying. Rob, I can't believe how you were treated in the first place. I mean, I can understand that maybe they missed something, but then having to wait two weeks for the operation, and the idea you were doing physiotherapy so early just sends shivers through me. I hope they were just helping you to walk on crutches rather than any real exercises? Also I can't believe no one has advised not to elevate the leg. That's the main thing doctors where I am have advised, since, just after major surgery for the next few weeks, things will be healing, and you don't want big nasty clots forming.

Of course, six months on, swelling shouldn't be a problem. Maybe you just need to take some anti inflammatories?

How are you progressing now? It seems you are doing some gym work, I take it you're just about getting about? I've only ruptured one quadricep tendon, but bilateral, that 's got to be awful. You can't rely on any leg to take the strain. I would imagine it would be somewhat slower for someone in your position.

What's your Range of Movement like? And is the strength back? Are you still relying on crutches or anything?

I too am rather fast paced. So this has really hampered me. My first surgery though went like a dream. My second surgery, the rehab protocol for that was completely different and so much slower. six months down the line, and I still don't have a full range of movement - stuck at about 120 - and that's compared to last time where I achieved full ROM within 3 months.

But there's something to think about - you don't want this happening again. Work on the strength and the confidence.

I've basically put my life on hold with not taking too many unnecessary risks - like, going to the cinema, or going clubbing!

And how are you doing Al-M? Did you get in touch with me via my blog? Your nick seems familiar. 12 weeks for you, how's your ROM and strength?

Cheers everyone.... I wish you all continued good luck and pray this never happens to any of us again...

Bye for now...

Cya
Simon

Offline frederico

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Re: Ruptured Quadriceps Tendon
« Reply #11 on: January 07, 2007, 10:48:15 PM »
My thoughts and prayers to you all for your progression in rehab.  I went out on my mountainbike the first time on an unusually warm January 1st.  It felt great to be on outside and moving under my own power.

Take your time my fellow quad. tendon repair friends, is all I can say.  It takes time, (much more than I ever thought) patience and diligent discipline with the exercises. 

Offline BLUEFIVEVA

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Re: Ruptured Quadriceps Tendon
« Reply #12 on: January 13, 2007, 10:25:37 PM »
Hi All,

I had my quad tendon ruptured two months ago and repaired a month and a half ago due to a misdiagnosis. I am in one of those braces with 30 degrees of motion.  It seems like I have no strength in my quad musscle. Today was the first day I could do any Straight Leg Lifts.  I get a lot of pain in the patella tendon on the way down.  Is that normal?  My range of motion was measured at 110 degrees last week at PT and from what I have read here that seems at least about average.  Does anybody really get back to normal?

BLUEFIVEVA


Offline frederico

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Re: Ruptured Quadriceps Tendon
« Reply #13 on: January 14, 2007, 02:26:25 AM »
I know I could not believe how little strength I had in my quads after the surgery.  It was absolutely pathetic!

My experience was as yours,  I tried to do a straight leg lift and had the patella pain. If you have 110 degrees of motion and you are 6 weeks post surgery, I would say you are doing great.  I am 4+ months out and have gotten my pre-op ROM back.  It is possible, but it TAKES TIME. My surgeon and P.T. both emphasized it takes 3 months for the tendon to heal. (and I would have to agree with them, despite being totally skeptical about it)  Before that you have to be very careful not to overstress the tendon. 

Offline robwalk

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Re: Ruptured Quadriceps Tendon
« Reply #14 on: January 23, 2007, 05:27:13 PM »
Well Simon, thanks for asking. I am doing much better. I am now driving, and can drive myself to the gym. I do use the walker in the gym, because it is very busy, and don't want to fall with all the activity. But mostly I use the cane, a little scary especially since I have a problem descending, no problem going up the hills just down. I only work out 3 days a week, I concentrate mainly on leg extensions, leg curls, leg presses, and bike riding. I tried walking on the treadmills at 2.0 mph, but the knees buckeled, however I did not fall all the way, and was able to stop the belt, although that was tough, because I could not straighten the legs, while the belt was running,  right away. The doc told me not to do the treadmill, but just to ride the bike more, I also tried the stair master, but the knees buckedled again, and then I tried the stair master mountain climber, same problem. I am also back to upper body training, with machines not using free weights yet, and where I used to do 300 crunches daily I now am back to 100. I am gaining in the range of motion, can almost touch my butt with my heels...but I do some exercises every day, even though I only go to the gym 3 times a week yet. I spoke with my doc about the swelling in my knees and he said it was normal, and he is still telling me 1 year from my accident.He also told me I have some arthritis in the knees which is one problem because they are stiff. I am going a Therapeutic Pool Group where I can do water exercises for that problem. I am 68 year old, I am diabetic, and as I stated have had a heart attack, and quintuple bypass surgery in 1998. I felt 18 before the accident, and now I feel 20..so that isn't so bad. You will be ok, I guess it takes time, and each of us recovers differently. My main problem is depression which the doctor told me now to get into, but cannot help think why me?...guess if you live long enough a lot happens to you. The fact I can drive again helps me, love to drive my car it goes 0-60 in 7 seconds, much faster than I can walk at this time.  Good Luck to all, and Thank God for this site it has helped me tremendously. Rob















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