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Author Topic: ACL surgery with hamstring end of the tendon sticking out  (Read 1457 times)

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Offline mattis

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ACL surgery with hamstring end of the tendon sticking out
« on: November 14, 2011, 03:26:57 AM »
I had ACL surgery using my hamstring tendon 13 days ago. It looks as though my wounds are healing nicely, except where they harvested my tendon. I'm not a surgeon but I pretty damn sure that the end of the tendon is sticking out of the wound. The OS gave me strickt orders to keep the knee dry, which I have done. However, I just noticed that the white strips covering the wound were sliding around. So I removed them and saw that nasty tendon sticking out. It was also bleeding from the end of it. It sticks out around 2 millimeters.

And I don't have extra strips to cover it up so I dunno how to care for it.

I'll call my surgeon first thing tomorrow and ask if this is normal, but it freaks me out so I wanted to ask here first for a quicker response. Anyone one on here experienced what I'm talking about?

I would take a picture to post on here, but it looks rather nasty so I'll spare you the sight.

Offline Kaputt_Knee

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Re: ACL surgery with hamstring end of the tendon sticking out
« Reply #1 on: November 14, 2011, 05:21:06 AM »
I think you will find that it is one of the sutures, not the "end" of the tendon.  ;D They do not remove the whole tendon by the way - that would hamstring you! The tools they use are a bit like ice-cream scoops in that the take a strip (not  a scoop) along the length of the tendon and then double or quadruple it up and tie it together into an ACL like bundle.

The fibres you are seeing are probably the end of a bio-absorbable internal stitch. Some people's bodies reject these and "spit" them out. Call your surgeon tomorrow and see if someone can take a look see and maybe sort things out.

Sue  ;)
1989 big trauma R. knee - sorted
1990-2004 3ACL recons and 20+ arthroscopies -RK
3/06 LK ACL torn!
4/06 ACL recon, kneecap broken
09 &10/06- 2x meniscus trims
3/07 - Notch Plastic & Lateral Release
14/8/08 complete revision ACL plus LCL/PLC recon
6/2/09 returned to skiing! Whoopee

Offline mattis

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Re: ACL surgery with hamstring end of the tendon sticking out
« Reply #2 on: November 14, 2011, 06:17:33 AM »
I think you might have misunderstood me. I know that they don't take the whole length of the tendon. That's why I believe that the OS pulled out as much tendon he needed and then sliced it off, and the end this is what sticks out of the wound.

Heres a picture from a couple days ago. Click on the link if you dare  ;)
http://s446.photobucket.com/albums/qq182/Mattisgl/ACL%20surgery/?action=view&current=tendon.jpg

I also decided to not put any band aid on it for now just let it dry. It now has a crusty surface which I assume is a good thing.

Offline Kaputt_Knee

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Re: ACL surgery with hamstring end of the tendon sticking out
« Reply #3 on: November 14, 2011, 06:43:27 AM »
That is just the gunk healing stuff from the wounds! It is fibrous in nature and can be mistaken for tissue if you don't know what you are looking at. Leave it to dry out and then it will drop off, just like any scab.

If you are worried, contact your surgeon but I assure you they have not "pulled out as much tendon he needed and then sliced it off". The harvesting tool enters your leg through the incision in the medial part of your knee and is moved upwards and along the line of the tendon before being removed with the harvested tissue. Your tendons are attached to the muscle body, they are not free standing bits of elastic!

Take a look at some of the videos posted on You Tube and other places to see how they harvest the tendon material! What you are dreaming off is just not possible except in a Tom & Jerry cartoon or maybe one of Krusty the Klown's efforts in the Simpsons!
1989 big trauma R. knee - sorted
1990-2004 3ACL recons and 20+ arthroscopies -RK
3/06 LK ACL torn!
4/06 ACL recon, kneecap broken
09 &10/06- 2x meniscus trims
3/07 - Notch Plastic & Lateral Release
14/8/08 complete revision ACL plus LCL/PLC recon
6/2/09 returned to skiing! Whoopee

Offline mattis

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Re: ACL surgery with hamstring end of the tendon sticking out
« Reply #4 on: November 14, 2011, 07:30:47 AM »
Ok great! Thanks for clearing that up. I will still call my surgeon tomorrow just to make sure. He knows better than anyone whats going around inside my knee.

Again, thanks.

Offline Lottiefox

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Re: ACL surgery with hamstring end of the tendon sticking out
« Reply #5 on: November 14, 2011, 08:26:20 AM »
That looks totally normal to me - as Kaputt Knee has said its the natural wound gunk draining out, which is kind of globby. That wound looks healthy to me. When I had foot surgery I had a lump like that dry up and fall off - underneath was a long stitch sticking out of the side of my foot. On instruction from my doc I had to clip it close to the skin. Wound healing is a complex process but I think you'll find that isn't your tendon....

If you're really worried check with your surgeon but your tendon can't start to hang out of an incision. Good luck with your recovery,

Lottie  :)
Bilateral patella OA since 2009, no surgeries.
Euflexxa working well x3 to current
Right forefoot CRPS post fusion surgery 2011
Refusing to let the ailing parts stop me....

Offline mattis

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Re: ACL surgery with hamstring end of the tendon sticking out
« Reply #6 on: November 14, 2011, 11:07:26 AM »
I checked out some youtube videos as kaputt_knee advised. Felt a little sick at times watching those videos (and that wasn't the pain medicines fault!  :o ) and I now understand how the harvest the tendon. Thanks for responding guys.

Offline Kaputt_Knee

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Re: ACL surgery with hamstring end of the tendon sticking out
« Reply #7 on: November 14, 2011, 12:35:07 PM »
 ;D ;D ;D

Now you know why you have such lovely bruising!  ;D

Stronger stomach than me - I've never watched them but I did ask about HOW the instruments work and what the do to harvest the tissue for the graft! Much easier on the stomach as well  ;)
1989 big trauma R. knee - sorted
1990-2004 3ACL recons and 20+ arthroscopies -RK
3/06 LK ACL torn!
4/06 ACL recon, kneecap broken
09 &10/06- 2x meniscus trims
3/07 - Notch Plastic & Lateral Release
14/8/08 complete revision ACL plus LCL/PLC recon
6/2/09 returned to skiing! Whoopee















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