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Author Topic: Ruptured Quadriceps Tendon  (Read 398852 times)

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Offline frederico

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Re: Ruptured Quadriceps Tendon
« Reply #90 on: October 12, 2007, 11:18:48 PM »
I would recommend isometric exercises - just tensing leg muscles as much as you can. One exercise I did early on was a straight leg raise.  Lie on floor on your back and raise leg up from hip.  Alternatively, sit in chair with leg on ottoman and raise it up.  Depending on the degree of movement within the brace, you may be able to do some tiny leg extensions as well, but take it easy on that until you are a few months post-surgery.  Of course lots of walking can be done early on.  Just watch the slippery or uneven surfaces. Another exercise is the what I call the reverse leg lift.  Lie on your stomach and attempt to the lift your leg up off the floor.  A variation of this is to get on your hands and good knee and attempt to lift injured leg out straight behind you. 

It's always great to get off the narcotics.  Microwavable heat packs are helpful to promote circulation and healing at this stage also.  Glad you found our comments to be a help.  I remember the wave of relief I had when I found this site and found there were others in my plight!
« Last Edit: October 13, 2007, 12:45:15 PM by frederico »

Offline nhbob

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Re: Ruptured Quadriceps Tendon
« Reply #91 on: October 13, 2007, 01:57:09 PM »
Hi,

I also ruptured my left quad tendon almost three weeks ago (24 Sept 07) while hiking.  I have posted in a couple of forums here on Knee Guru (thank goodness for a site to read so much info and experiences of others).

I had a question to see if any others are having the same experience, my knee was operated on 4 days after the rupture, unfortunately only 2 days later one of the patella anchors let go, so I was back in surgery 5 days after the first surgery, where the surgeon just used the sutures thru the patella instead of the anchors.  I was fitted with a full leg cast for 1 week, and went back this past Tues (4 days ago) and now have a immobilizer.

He (the surgeon) also gave me a smaller knee immobilizer that he has set to 30 degrees, and wants me to be using that immobilizer by the time I am back to see him on 24 October.  After reading several posts here about quad tendon rupture, it seems many people have been in the immobilizer or casts for several weeks before even starting ROM... and of course I am so afraid of undoing the surgery what would be a 3rd time, if it happened. 

Does this seem too aggressive for trying to ROM?  I still having a lot of pain when I try to do anything maybe beyond 10 degrees.  Also I am still completely unable to even come close to a straight leg raise, I have to use my good leg to manipulate the bad leg around.

and on the mental side, this has really been devastating to me... up to 3 weeks ago I was an avid cycle tourist, hiker, always on the go type of person... and I am terrified that part of my life is gone, where I'm sure I will be able to walk again, but never with the vigor I had.  It is amazing how life can change in an  instant (I had twisted my right ankle while descending a mountain and tried to catch myself with a hard slam of my left leg... rupturing the quad tendon)

Thanks everybody,
Bob White
Ruptured Left Quadricep Tendon on 24 September 2007
Surgery 28 Sept 2007 (but suture anchor broke)
Surgery 03 Oct 2007 (OS did not use suture anchor 2nd time around)
Ruptured Disk in Back affecting S1 nerve 11 Dec 2007
Back Surgery 09 Jan 2008 to uncompress S1 nerve

Offline BTI

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Re: Ruptured Quadriceps Tendon
« Reply #92 on: October 13, 2007, 06:40:55 PM »
Hi Bob,

Very sorry to hear of your injury, looks like we are just a few days apart on our injuries and operations. My OS placed me in an immobilizer and told me that he did not want me to put ANY weight on it or attempt to bend it.  He did mention that around the one month mark, he may opt for a "Bledsoe" brace that will allow range of motion.  (I was supposed to go to Mexico on vacation 10/20) He thinks I could go if I am extremely careful, but I cancelled.

It has been 23 days now since the operation and I have not done anything regarding stretching, leg lifts, tensing the quads...not only for fear of doing additional damage, but the OS did not advise.  I see him again in 3 days. Like you Bob and I'm sure many others on this site, we are devastated by these types of injuries and slip into a funk, a depression of wondering if things will ever be the same.  It is scary, wondering if complications will arise and such...stay strong and when you are able to begin rehab, stay committed to the exercises and good things will happen. 

All the best,

Brandon

Best regards,

Brandon

Pain is nothing but a feeling.  It tells us we are trying, we are getting better. We must do what we think we cannot. Success to all...

1980 R-ACL
1995 L-ACL
9-20-2007 R Quad Rupture

Offline frederico

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Re: Ruptured Quadriceps Tendon
« Reply #93 on: October 14, 2007, 12:28:28 PM »
Bob, don't get discouraged at this point.  I am just over a year out after my quad rupture and pretty much have returned to normal activity, and I was pretty active (road biker) prior to the accident.  The only tangible symptom/deficit is my tendon gets stiff and sore - moreso it seems if I don't exercise it.  THe ROM is good. 
The only other annoyance is I can't kneel directly on my knee without some extra padding over it.  Not a big deal for me. 

I remember the first few months being discouraged about how slow I was progressing and how weak my leg was.  After the three month mark, my P.T. encouraged me to push and I had steady but slow improvement.
It takes time, and you can't rush it, but the improvement will come.   

My experience with the OS is that they tend to want to err on the side of doing too little.  Probably wise especially in your case.  I tended to push my leg carefully every week to see what I could do and when I had discomfort and tried to maintain a balance between that.  I was afraid that if I didn't try to push a little more each week, I would end up with a restricted ROM or great difficulty getting back to my pre-op ROM.     

When I was given the IROM brace, which I believe was about two weeks post-surgery, it was set at 10 degrees, and I thought that was waaayyy too much freedom.  However, I quickly adapted to it and increased it on my own about 10 degrees each week thereafter. To start out at 30......hmmmm that sounds like a big jump from my experience.

Best regards to all.

Offline nhbob

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Re: Ruptured Quadriceps Tendon
« Reply #94 on: October 14, 2007, 08:00:25 PM »
Thank you both Frederico and BTI for your responses...

BTI, sorry you missed your trip to Mexico, I also had to cancel a trip to San Francisco for a huge musical festival they had last weekend, there was no way on earth I could have taken any trip at all, I still have great difficulty getting into a car. 

My OS seems to be aggressive, I was going to start using the smaller brace set to 30 degrees tomorrow (15 Oct), but maybe I will wait a bit longer, it has not even been 1.5 weeks since my last surgery.

Frederico, how is your bike riding doing? are you pretty close to the same level you were before your misfortune?  Are you hill-climbing abilities still the same??  I was a pretty aggressive rider (not fast, but certainly I had some great stamina, I did a lot of bicycle-touring on a loaded bicycle, as recent as June I was cycling in Colorado with no problems for a 55 year old guy).

You must be so happy to have all this behind you now?  I guess there is no choice but to keep pushing thru this!

BTI, we'll get thru this!

Bob
Ruptured Left Quadricep Tendon on 24 September 2007
Surgery 28 Sept 2007 (but suture anchor broke)
Surgery 03 Oct 2007 (OS did not use suture anchor 2nd time around)
Ruptured Disk in Back affecting S1 nerve 11 Dec 2007
Back Surgery 09 Jan 2008 to uncompress S1 nerve

Offline BTI

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Re: Ruptured Quadriceps Tendon
« Reply #95 on: October 15, 2007, 12:19:07 AM »
Hey Bob,

Yes, we will get through this!  I had a great day today, off the painkillers for a week now and I only needed Ibuprofen once.  Went out to dinner for the first time since the operation, sat in a booth with my leg up on the bench seat...no problems!  A feeling of "normalcy" is creeping back into my life. 

I still have very restless nights and difficulty sleeping more than 2.5 - 3 hours at a clip.  Picked up some Melatonin and will give that a shot.  Both you and Federico sound like you were pretty competive bike riders, I'll have to get my mountain bike off the racks and do some training when able.  I'll send another update after my next OS appointment on Tuesday.  Really looking to hear some good news so I can take the next step in this journey. 

At this point, (24 days since surgery) I have not put ant weight on my foot while standing, Haven't done any PT, leg raises or any kind of lifts...Taking it slow and easy, do not want to undo any work that has been done.  OS told me I have many sutures in the tendon and even the quad muscle. 

Send an update soon...

Best regards,

Brandon

PS:  Federico: Thanks for your valuable input, much appreciated!
Best regards,

Brandon

Pain is nothing but a feeling.  It tells us we are trying, we are getting better. We must do what we think we cannot. Success to all...

1980 R-ACL
1995 L-ACL
9-20-2007 R Quad Rupture

Offline frederico

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Re: Ruptured Quadriceps Tendon
« Reply #96 on: October 15, 2007, 12:55:11 AM »
Bob, my biking has been great this year!  ;D Actually, it is the best year I have ever had, thanks to finding a riding buddy who has spurred me on to longer and harder rides. (I turned 55 this yr. also) Hill climbs have been outstanding as well. My quad cooperated with the increased riding very nicely, although I would still get soreness in the tendon if I pushed it too hard too fast. The only minor setback I had was in subconsciously favoring my bad leg early on (or my bad leg not really working as strongly as it seemed)  and getting a slight tear in my opposite calf muscle to the point I had to take a few weeks off to let that repair. 

Anyway, there is life left after you get rid of the brace! Just take it slow and steady- the hard part.   

Yes, it is nice to be one year out from the incident, and it keeps me humble to read your postings and recollect the straits I was in one year ago. Then, to realize how much leg has improved - a miracle of modern medicine, the human body, and God's grace.

Keep the faith. 
« Last Edit: October 15, 2007, 02:41:01 PM by frederico »

Offline BTI

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Re: Ruptured Quadriceps Tendon
« Reply #97 on: October 16, 2007, 05:58:19 PM »
Update: Day 26 post Op. Complete Rupture Quad tendon. OS appointment today, Dr. said he is pleased, all looks good.  2 more weeks in the full immobilizer, then go to Bledsoe brace with range of motion.  At that point I can begin weight bearing, passive stretching, light exercise.  I've been off pain meds for 8 days, feel better with a clear head and body.  It is a slow process, significant atrophy...which is depressing, but I see small improvements daily...

Best regards,

Brandon
Best regards,

Brandon

Pain is nothing but a feeling.  It tells us we are trying, we are getting better. We must do what we think we cannot. Success to all...

1980 R-ACL
1995 L-ACL
9-20-2007 R Quad Rupture

Offline nhbob

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Re: Ruptured Quadriceps Tendon
« Reply #98 on: October 16, 2007, 07:47:17 PM »
Hey Brandon,

Sounds like you are coming along quite well, boy the different ways that different OS's treat this surgery (or any other at that), seems to be totally different!  I am only 13 days post-op, and for the past 2 days I've been using the 30 degree lockout immobilizer, and been slight weightbearing (they told me that OK once I had that huge cast off, which was just 6 days post-op).

I hope they're not being too aggressive with me, I'd rather have a solid repair and take baby steps to get back, then have a repair that may re-rupture in the future. 

I am still getting around on crutches, still cannot do any type of straight leg raise, even though when I do get in bed at night, it is a bit easier to drag my foot across the bed, like maybe I am taking a bit of weight off to slide the foot in easier than it did before.

My surgeon (who is on vacation this week, but I see him next Wednesday, 3 weeks post-op), he was pretty adamant that I start working on ROM, even when I was in the cast, he told me to wiggle about inside the cast as much as possible.

Hopefully both you and I will do just fine, and come out of this with just a scar on a leg!  The process is so slow sometimes, the inability to even carry a glass of water to the table is so foreign to me!  If I have to go through this whole process again, I swear I could not do it.

The rest of my update, is tomorrow I will head back to my home (I have been at my sister's house for since the surgery), since I live by myself, I will have to be preparing my own meals, etc.  Friends are going to help me out with groceries, chores, etc.  I am going to try to get back to work the following week (likely, right after my OS appt).  I am running low on money with this unexpected disaster, and my boss (who is switching his automatic minivan with me, I have a manual shift) is going on vacation for 10 days, and I told him I would try my best to help out with coverage (and money for me).  I'm a pharmacist in a hospital, so all I really need to do is get there and settle into a comfortable chair with a computer terminal and a phone.

Even though it's been over 3 weeks since I ruptured my tendon in an instant, it all still seems like a nightmare,  I wouldn't wish this on anybody, but I realize there's not much I can do, but put the time in to get things healed, and look forward to each milestone (like driving a car, or getting rid of the crutches!!!!)

Brandon, I wanted to ask you where you lived, do you live in the UK?  Just wondering about the difference in care between areas, I already know the difference in regards to me feeling I'm doing too much, especially after reading the postings here on the bulletin board.

keep up the good work!,
Bob
Ruptured Left Quadricep Tendon on 24 September 2007
Surgery 28 Sept 2007 (but suture anchor broke)
Surgery 03 Oct 2007 (OS did not use suture anchor 2nd time around)
Ruptured Disk in Back affecting S1 nerve 11 Dec 2007
Back Surgery 09 Jan 2008 to uncompress S1 nerve

Offline BTI

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Re: Ruptured Quadriceps Tendon
« Reply #99 on: October 16, 2007, 10:19:58 PM »
Hi Bob! 

Thanks for the detailed response, very helpful.  Yes, it seems my OS is bringing along more carefully, it's okay with me, I am just anxious to build the muscle and strength back as quick as possible.  Keep in mind, I had 3 separate & complete tears of the quad tendon and I tore part of my muscle too.  There was a small piece of my Patella that broke away that they removed and they filed down a bone spur that was on my Patella also.  So maybe he wants to have 2 more weeks with the immobilizer for extra insurance.  Take it easy, don't try and be so independent and push yourself too soon.  We do not want any relapses!

Be well my friend...

PS: I live in Orange County, New York.

Best regards,

Brandon

Pain is nothing but a feeling.  It tells us we are trying, we are getting better. We must do what we think we cannot. Success to all...

1980 R-ACL
1995 L-ACL
9-20-2007 R Quad Rupture

Offline bill.cochrane

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Re: Ruptured Quadriceps Tendon
« Reply #100 on: October 21, 2007, 12:21:05 PM »
Hi from Australia,
I echo the sentiments of others and find this site has answered many of my questions.I am a military freefall instructor in the Australian Army and I ruptured my quadriceps tendon (left) after an inexperienced jumper cut me off on landing and stole my air.This happened 10  days ago .I had surgery 24 hours after the accident and have a leg brace on at the moment and am getting around on crutches and I have no pain unless I jar the knee.My main concern is how long will it take before I will be able to drive my manual car and will the repair be as strong as the original tendon?Thank you for answering so many of my questions and allaying some of my fears.
Regards,
Bill

Offline nhbob

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Re: Ruptured Quadriceps Tendon
« Reply #101 on: October 21, 2007, 12:58:46 PM »
Hi Bill,

I just love Australia, I was there last year for 3 weeks, and spent a couple of months in New Zealand cycle-touring (I won't be doing anything like that this year).

Well Bill I am now almost one month after my ruptured quad tendon, and I guess it is true what everyone seems to be echoing here on the "ruptured quad tendon" thread, and others I have talked to.  It just takes time, it seems what people say, the outcome is pretty good, but the amount of time to heal is almost unbearable (and I am only a month into this).  My OS said 6 months for full recovery, with continue strength building for another 6 months.

What it really sounds like you have going for you, is the swiftness you got into surgery, I have seen it mentioned several times that fast intervention has given better results than folks that have to wait longer for surgery.

I am still on crutches, bending my knee in a brace now to about 20-25 degrees, I have a surgeon followup appt this Wednesday and start PT on 29 Oct.  I am hoping things will go along faster than what's happening now.  My leg is feeling ever so better, but by tiny little increments each day.  Sometimes there's a day or two that I think it's slipped back... but then it seems to come about and slightly improve again to another little tiny step better than a few days ago.

I also have a manual shift car, and am going to switch cars with my boss for a few weeks (he has an automatic), plus my car is a small car (Subaru) and the limited bend of my knee makes it very difficult to get in the car.

The whole process seems to be a nightmare and definitely life-changing for the immediate future, I was very very active until this happened to me, the past month has been a wakeup call to the vulnerability of my life (I've never been in a position like this in my life, I have always been the "helper" and the strong one).  It looks like it's a matter of putting the time in to heel the injury.

Bob
Ruptured Left Quadricep Tendon on 24 September 2007
Surgery 28 Sept 2007 (but suture anchor broke)
Surgery 03 Oct 2007 (OS did not use suture anchor 2nd time around)
Ruptured Disk in Back affecting S1 nerve 11 Dec 2007
Back Surgery 09 Jan 2008 to uncompress S1 nerve

Offline bill.cochrane

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Re: Ruptured Quadriceps Tendon
« Reply #102 on: October 21, 2007, 02:19:51 PM »
Bob,
thanks for your reply,it`s good to know this forum is read often.I go to see my doctor tomorrow and have a review with the orthopod on Monday week.I am away from my family at the moment as I was instructing on a military freefall course when this hapened so I am hoping the surgeon will be able to bend my knee enough for me to sit in an aircraft to get me back to Brisbane.I should get my staples out this week.I can walk slowly without my crutches but with the brace on.I was running 3 times a week before the accident so  am hoping this will help my recovery.I hope everyone gets better soon.I will certainly keep in touch through this forum.

Regards,
Bill

Offline BTI

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Re: Ruptured Quadriceps Tendon
« Reply #103 on: October 23, 2007, 03:32:36 AM »
Hey Guys,

Good to read the updates, thanks.  I'm at day 32 post op from my quad tendon rupture (3 places) and a quad muscle tear.  Sutures are out, incision right over the knee cap is healing very well.  I'm an active athlete and lifter and I lost 15 pounds!  I am eating much better, taking supplements and protein drinks.
Feeling much better, off all pain meds for 2 weeks now.  I am still in a full leg immobilizer, will go to a hinge brace next week with some range of motion.  Knee is still a bit swollen, but overall I feel pretty good.  Can't wait to build back muscle and strength, my leg is the size of my arm!!

I look forward to reading your updates on your rehab and recovery. 

Best to all,

Brandon
Best regards,

Brandon

Pain is nothing but a feeling.  It tells us we are trying, we are getting better. We must do what we think we cannot. Success to all...

1980 R-ACL
1995 L-ACL
9-20-2007 R Quad Rupture

Offline nhbob

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Re: Ruptured Quadriceps Tendon
« Reply #104 on: October 27, 2007, 09:01:27 PM »
Hi guys,

Kind of a dreary day here, rainy all day... been back home for a few days after being at my sister's for 3 weeks.  Had my OS f/u appt this past Wednesday.  He seems to think things are going good.  I am still on crutches, with the biggest pain actually off to the side of my knee, away from the surgery.  I had pain in the same area 3-4 years ago and treated totally by exercise, I guess this tendon rupture and repair will really mess up the alignment in there.

Brandon, it sounds like you're doing pretty good... your OS certainly seems to be more conservative than mine, I have a flex now to 30 degrees with comfort though.  I just don't want to do anything stupid.  This is probably the best news, I can actually do a leg lift with some concentration and effort, but at least it seems to be all reconnected.  But the process is so slow, it really bums me out at times.  It seems I make no progress at all some days, but I guess it is better.  I still can not weight bear totally on the repaired leg, not even just standing.

As for driving, I still have great difficulty getting into a car.  My boss dropped off his Dodge Caravan, and I had to fight my way into it, with a lot of stretching and pain that felt like I could have been on the verge of messing things up, the car is also kind of high of the ground.  Then once in the car, it wasn't comfortable either... even with the seat all the way back,  my legs are a bit long, so I'm sure that adds to the problem.  (I always drive with the seat all the way back anyways, so there's not much give from normal for me).  I will try again tomorrow to get in the car... I am scheduled back to work on Tuesday.

The other thing, is my first PT appt is Monday. 

Just a bit down today, sometimes it seems things will never get back to normal.  Only had one phone call all day.  A friend of mine was going to come up from Massachusetts to visit, but something came up and she couldn't make it... funny, I guess I was really looking forward to a visit.  Oh well, I'll catch the Red Sox and Colorado Rockies tonight and call it a night.

Hey Brandon, funny, but I have lost 15 pounds too... you would think the weight would go on, but knowing the excess wieght could hurt the recovery process, I am doing a good job of fending off the urges of the kitchen!

Bob

PS Bill from OZ, how are things going out there for you?  At least summer is on the way!
« Last Edit: October 27, 2007, 09:03:18 PM by nhbob »
Ruptured Left Quadricep Tendon on 24 September 2007
Surgery 28 Sept 2007 (but suture anchor broke)
Surgery 03 Oct 2007 (OS did not use suture anchor 2nd time around)
Ruptured Disk in Back affecting S1 nerve 11 Dec 2007
Back Surgery 09 Jan 2008 to uncompress S1 nerve















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