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Offline macker

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My experience so far
« on: November 24, 2008, 12:19:16 PM »
Hello to all.
I have posted once, however spent most of my time reading the bags of information on the board.  I would like to say thankyou to everone who have posted.  The information is invaluable.  Ok, to fill everyone in.  My name is Mark, and i am 6 days post op, i had an acl reconstruction using hamstring, and i am feeling very good  ;D

I found out i needed the reconstruction in July, and immediatly searched the internet to find out as much as possible.  I stumbled accross this site, and have been an avid reader ever since.  One of the first steps i took was to begin an intensive preop training programme.  To give people a bit of background, i am 38 a PE teacher.  I play football, and also study Aikido and Tai-chi.  My intensive preop training programme included exercises to improve the strength of my quads, hamstrings, and lots of core stability and balancing.  If anyone wants a full list of what i did i have saved a log on microsoft one-note and can post.  I also took an interest in what exercises people posted on this site.  One i have not seen was the 'Peterson step' which i found really helpful.  Swimming also.

I was supposed to have my op in October, however the surgeon was taken ill and i had to be rescheduled.  This was a major knockback, as this happened about two days before my op date.   >:(
I was given another date, a month later, with a new surgeon who happened to work out of the local sports clinic.  Which seemed a bit of a result.

Well i thought i was mentally prepared, that was untill i was sat in a room outside the theatre when i started to get a bit nervous.  Then a nurse couldn't get the IV line in.  Then all i can remember was the anaesthetist getting the IV in, then waking up in recovery.  Feeling like i had been on the beer.  I was then wheeled up to my ward, just in time for some food.  I was really suprised that i felt really good.  I did take regular painkillers, and also anti-sickness tabs, and even now i am really suprised that i did not feel any discomfort.

My protocol for the last 5 days has been lying down, legs elevated, and icing 4 times a day.  Only getting up to go to the loo, however a few times i have walked without my crutches.  Which again suprises me, because i thought this may have been more uncomfortable than it was.  The exercises i have been prescribed at the moment are quad tightening (x10) and heel slides (x10) 5 times a day.  Though i probably do more.  I have my first physio appointment tomorrow at the hospital.  I am really looking forward to doing more.  My biggest problem is not 'running before i can walk' ;D

Reading all the successes on this site was very inspirational, and i too hope i can add to this.  I am so looking forward to getting back to football and aikido.  Which i stopped in July.
Masakatsu agatsu - True victory is self victory.

Offline queeny

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Re: My experience so far
« Reply #1 on: November 24, 2008, 02:42:36 PM »
It sounds like you're doing great!

If it makes you feel any better, I started back at taekwondo training at 3 months. I started just with the fitness stuff and upper body techniques, then patterns and lower body techniques, then I added padwork, then non contact sparring, then finally, semi-contact sparring. It's been 5 months today today for me.

I had to start back at TKD really. At about 3 months I lost all motivation for my rehab exercises and I just couldnt bring myself to carry on. Now I'm swimming 3 times a week and doing taekwondo up to 4 times a week and it's going great!

My problem has also been "running before I can walk" but you can definitely get there. So far it's not been anywhere near as bad as I thought it would be but actually, I do still have a fair way to go. I'm able to do taekwondo because of the sports specific training I've been doing, but I couldnt go out and play a game of squash, for example, without doing at least 2 weeks specific training for it. Before the op, I could just go out and do it!

Do let us know how you get on :)

Offline nellsa

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Re: My experience so far
« Reply #2 on: November 24, 2008, 08:00:02 PM »
Hi Macker
so glad you decided to post up your progress so far.  Its very reassuring to find that you are doing so well.  I will be having my the same Op as you on 5 December, and like you have been reading the posts on here and benefiting from all information that everyone shares.  Did you have your Op on the NHS and how long did you stay in hospital?
all the best for your continuing recovery

Nellsa
April 2007: fell off step ladder and  fractured patella & tibia, tore MCL and total ruptured ACL

Rehab: July 07 -November 08

ACLR: December 08

Offline dancer49

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Re: My experience so far
« Reply #3 on: November 24, 2008, 09:18:14 PM »
You sound pretty good here! Thanks for posting again. Feel better.
Oct. 8, 2008 ACL tear
Dec. 11, 2008 ACLr plus 2 Mid & Lateral Meniscal Repairs

Offline macker

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Re: My experience so far
« Reply #4 on: November 25, 2008, 12:06:37 PM »
Hello all.  Just an update.
Thanks for your reply Queeny, hello, i may be able to get back to Aikido after 3 months, i will just have to concentrate on straight line stuff, and maybe just weapon work and not throwing people.  A goal i have set myself is 6 months back on the mat!  However thanks for your experience.  I started my martial art journey in TKD.
Nellsa, hi, yes i was nhs, in Basingstoke - Hampshire, i was in overnight.  Though today at Physio i met a lad who had to stay in two days.  He didn't feel too good when he woke up.

Which leads me to my first physio appointment today, 7 days post op.  My ROM was 110, which the physio was pleased with.  She told me a normal knee is 130.  I have been given more exercises to do.  Wall heel slide (x10) and quarter squats (x10). i  One thing that i have noticed, and starting to take heed of, is that everyone is different.  Different how they react to the op, exercises etc.  Lots of people have said it on this board.
I am now waiting untill next Tuesday (2nd December) to see the surgeon, and have my dressings changed.  I have lovely bright yellow bruise on my shin.  I so want to get rid of my crutches though. 
Masakatsu agatsu - True victory is self victory.

Offline vts69

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Re: My experience so far
« Reply #5 on: November 25, 2008, 12:19:12 PM »
Hi Macker,

Sounds like you got yourself into great shape for the op, and sounds like you're starting a great recovery - keep up the good work and let us know how it goes.
Cheers
vts
May '04 Knee injury playing football.  GP diagnosed ACL fine - advised not to exercise it
Nov '04 Arthroscopy shows ACL torn to a strand.
May '05 2nd consultant leaves saying not enough funds for op.  3rd  says too old.  Walked out in disgust
Oct '08 hamstring autograft ACL recon

Offline feeny

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Re: My experience so far
« Reply #6 on: November 26, 2008, 01:40:46 PM »
Great start Macker - keep it up!

I used to ice 6-7x / day nad kept that up for a few months - I rehabbed hard - as Im sure you are - and I dont think it did any harm - basically 20 mins every two hours, front and back at once, I used to big flexi ice packs to do the job.

With regards to your exercises - why dont you add them to this thread:
http://www.kneeguru.co.uk/KNEEtalk/index.php?topic=29810.0

Keep us posted on your progress!

I took up FMA at about 6 months post-op I think - and then moved onto intense blade work (Amok!) - knee was good for it - although I wasn't game enough to start taking full contact thigh kicks and asked my training partners to go easy on the leg kicks.

Sep-05 ACL rupture, Medial mensical tear, MCL rupture
Oct-05 Had it all repaired (hamstring graft, meniscal rivet)
-and then-
4.5 Months post-op Snowboarding like a demon
7 Months post-op Successful return to indoor soccer (YEH!)
-and then-
Mar-2015 Arthroscopy to fix meniscus

Offline macker

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Re: My experience so far
« Reply #7 on: December 04, 2008, 10:01:58 AM »
Hello to everyone
i hope you are all keeping well.  Well this is week three post-op.  I visited the surgeon on Tuesday, i had my dressings removed.  I have some very neat and clean scars.  The biggest one under my knee cap is still abit tender.  Also at times i get like an electric shock feeling running down my quads.

I have been walking around without my crutches, my knee feels quite 'tight', going down stairs is harder than going up.  There are times when i totally forget that i have had an operation and turn suddenly or walk longer steps.  My knee then lets me know, it feels like its going to give way.  I may just use one crutch when i'm out in big crowds. 

The physio gave me another exercise, side steps (x10).  I asked if i could use a fixed bike and go swimming.  I was told no.  This bit is starting to get real frustrating, i so want to do much more. 
Masakatsu agatsu - True victory is self victory.

Offline feeny

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Re: My experience so far
« Reply #8 on: December 04, 2008, 09:48:39 PM »
What does the OS say about fixed bike and swimming?

I was ok for fixed bike ASAP after surgery - but it took me two weeks or so to be able to do it.. and I was cleared for swimming after about 3-4 weeks - mainly to make sure the incision wounds had healed and minimize any chance of infection.


Sep-05 ACL rupture, Medial mensical tear, MCL rupture
Oct-05 Had it all repaired (hamstring graft, meniscal rivet)
-and then-
4.5 Months post-op Snowboarding like a demon
7 Months post-op Successful return to indoor soccer (YEH!)
-and then-
Mar-2015 Arthroscopy to fix meniscus

Offline Jon W

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Re: My experience so far
« Reply #9 on: December 04, 2008, 10:45:20 PM »
Hi Macker,

I think we must have had surgey at a similar time - I'll be 3 weeks post-op tomorrow. Also had a hamstring graft and can relate to some of the things you mention.

I had my first out patient physio appt. this morning, which gave me more focus on what i need to achieve. I'm struggling slightly on extension so will be working to improve that. My physio encouraged to be less protective of my knee and to work it to ensure good range of movement. I gained confidence when she mentioned i will not damage the graft when pushing for the extension. Since the op i had been placing weight on my toes when walking but she really encouraged me to put more weight on the heel as i walk. My knee feels pretty tight still, especially when i wake up but i hope will improve with exercises and time.

Around the house completely off crutches and when outside have been taking one crutch. Agree that walking down stairs is harder than going up!  Hope that i can be on a static bike in a few weeks time but not yet discussed.

Be good to keep in touch over the coming weeks / months to share the experience and for moral support!

Offline macker

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Re: My experience so far
« Reply #10 on: December 05, 2008, 12:52:05 PM »
I forgot to add that my my ROM was measured.  With knee flexed it was 125 degrees, which again was an improvement.  However when extended it was -3 degrees, which she said may have to be corrected next week if no change.  I also went a bit silly with walking around and driving and sitting normally.  The result was that by the evening my knee had swollen up quite a bit, which worried me and put me on a bit of a downer :(

Hello Feeny, how are you keeping?  When i asked about the cycling and swimming she just said not yet, and gave me the stern look.  I will obviously ask again next week, and also a possible reason why not.  My wounds seem pretty clean and healed.  I suppose they have their protocols.  I have set my own little circuit up, old school sit ups and press ups.  I love my core-stability, however not sure about getting back on the ball. 

Hello Jon
i had my surgery on the 18th November.  I really want to push ahead, before surgery i was in the gym four times a week, and also swimming.  Its starting to hit me what a long road this is going to be.  I'm way from patient!  It will be good to help each other.  This site has a lot of nice people who have been there, and lots going through it.
Masakatsu agatsu - True victory is self victory.

Offline macker

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Re: My experience so far
« Reply #11 on: December 18, 2008, 01:58:25 PM »
Hello to everyone, i hope you are all well, and prepared for xmas. 
It is week 4 post op, and all seems to be going well.  At physio today my flexion was 133 degrees, however extension was -3.  Exercise wise things are going in the right direction, i now have a small circuit to complete ;D
These include Towel stretches (to get my extension to 0, the physio does not seem overly concerned that this is not yet), lying on front knee bends (once easy i can start adding ankle weights), lunges, calf/hamstring stretches, up and down on toes (2 leg and 1 leg), sitting knee bend with band resistance and extend with resistance, balance on a wobble board, wall squats, star lunge, BIKE  :D, 1/2 bridging. 
I was getting really frustrated at the minimal amount of work i was doing, and now i am looking forward to pushing on, a bit!

I got out of my car the other day, in a bit of a hurry and started to jog, then i realised i probably shouldn't be doing it :o so i slowed down rather slowly, it felt good.  No swimming yet, she told me another 2 weeks and then i can.  I can however do my exercises till the muscles fatigue.  I'm glad i'm at 4 weeks.  My next little goal will be swimming, in 2 weeks.
Masakatsu agatsu - True victory is self victory.

Offline nellsa

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Re: My experience so far
« Reply #12 on: December 18, 2008, 08:54:45 PM »
Hi macker
sounds like things are going really well for you.  I liked reading about your list of exercises that you are doing now.... I'm two weeks tomorrow since my hamstring ACLR (same as you- see my posts under anyone else ACL on 5 December) and am definitely missing the mobility factor.  I didn't have a brace/immobilizer at all - did you?

keep well

nellsa
April 2007: fell off step ladder and  fractured patella & tibia, tore MCL and total ruptured ACL

Rehab: July 07 -November 08

ACLR: December 08

Offline sheilaw

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Re: My experience so far
« Reply #13 on: December 18, 2008, 10:25:59 PM »
Hi, my 15 year old son had acl reconstruction on tues 16th. Still unable to leave hospital as he can't bend his knee to 90degrees. His knee seems very tight & swollen but no one has mentioned using ice packs. We feel we have lost a day as yesterday he was dizzy & sick probably from the morphine! He's able to use crutches but failed the stair test as he was in too much pain. Hopefully he will be a little better tomorrow!! Has anyone any tips for him

Offline macker

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Re: My experience so far
« Reply #14 on: December 19, 2008, 10:27:27 AM »
Hello Nellsa.  I dont have a brace/immobilizer.

Sheilaw, sorry  to hear about your son.  I hope he recovers, however i am sure he is in a really great place, getting great care and attention.  All the best. 

Mark
Masakatsu agatsu - True victory is self victory.