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Author Topic: complications: 13wks post ACL reconstruction w/meniscus repair  (Read 562 times)

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Offline cajfreem

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complications: 13wks post ACL reconstruction w/meniscus repair
« on: December 19, 2014, 06:28:05 AM »
I had an ACL reconstruction (hamstring graft) with medial meniscus repair.  I have had significant swelling since the surgery and pain.  The lump I had been feeling in the back of my knee had been disregarded by my PT (I've since changed therapists), so I never said anything to my doc. During a doppler ultrasound (4wks post-op), the radiographer and radiologist both "forgot" to report a Baker's cyst.  I finally disregarded the therapist and informed my doctor of the lump 6wks later (about 10wks post op) because he was very concerned with my progress, pain, and excessive swelling.  He discovered a chip in my bone where I was extremely tender to the touch, as well as the baker's cyst that had become so large it was into my calf (about the diameter of a tennis ball). 
Week 11: He attempted to drain, but due to it being there for so long it was too viscous to pull much out.  He administered a steroid injection, which helped significantly within a day or two. 
Over the past week and a half, I had gained almost normal gait pattern, increased resistance for exercises without pain, flexion went from struggling to obtain 120 degrees to easily obtaining 140 degrees within 4 days of the injection, and the tender area was pain free. 

5 days ago, I worked a 10hr day at my p.r.n. job at a skilled nursing home which requires A LOT of walking, pushing wheelchairs, and getting up and sitting down frequently.  The next morning I had a little swelling and stiffness, and by that night I could feel the cyst again.  Since then, the swelling has gotten progressively worse (over the past 4 days).  I saw my surgeon today for my 2wk follow-up.  He is not happy and stumped by the whole situation.  He ordered an MRI to see if it reveals anything.

The pain is just getting worse. I am back down to 120 degrees flexion and have to force my knee to full extension.  I have a serious limp because of the pain and lack of extension and now have soreness (tender to the touch) and swelling around the patella.  I have also developed a large swollen lump starting just above the tibia on the anterior medial portion of my leg (directly opposite the baker's cyst -  if you drew a straight line through that area of my knee, you would go through the center of both).  I'm so frustrated with the entire experience! Doing my exercises is extremely painful and its really hard for me to get through them or even initiate them at all! I don't know if resting it makes it worse and more stiff or if it helps at all.

Has anyone had a similar experience?  If so, what was the outcome?  Any suggestions on how to work through it? or what the surgeon may be looking for in the MRI? 

Any remedies for the swelling would be appreciated, too.  Ibuprofen doesn't seem to do much; sometimes I wear a sleeve brace for swelling, but it gets really hot and just swells up really bad once I take it off. I'm at a loss with everything right now....