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Author Topic: One Month Post-Op Patellar Tendon Autograft Reconstruction  (Read 1263 times)

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Offline Susan17

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One Month Post-Op Patellar Tendon Autograft Reconstruction
« on: August 25, 2017, 01:47:32 AM »
I said I would post on my one month mark so here goes...

I am going to PT three times a week and am doing exercises 3 times a day (not all but you can see the list below). While I am still on crutches I do feel like I am making progress. It's not what I thought it would be but it's progress. I am still in pain and on pain meds though I am JUST starting to go down and have done a few exercise sessions without them. I am still in a full brace and I ice either before or after my exercises depending on the state of the pain and swelling. My PT says he does not see any reason why I won't have a full recovery and does not see any sign of any problems.

I am not "quite" as depressed as I was about it but I am having a very hard time seeing that I will be "walking" into my doctor's office with no crutches in 2 weeks for my next follow up. I am still not able to put full weight on the leg and still feel very unstable. When I bathe in my "grandma" chair I still feel like I am lugging the leg around the shower instead of controlling it myself. That is a crappy feeling and I hate bathing:(

On a pretty good note, I just sold my house finally and my husband and I are living full-time in our RV just traveling - though we are stuck in the NY area for now until my 3rd follow up. I am looking forward to being cleared to drive back down South when the weather turns and finishing my PT in Tampa. Next summer I hope to be well enough to drive us around the other 23 states we never hit.

My husband says he still wants to summit Mt. Kilimanjaro so I told him we will start training next Spring for a winter expedition. Sitting here right now I cannot see this happening but I know that I was ready and capable before the injury so I am determined to get there.

I am so grateful for this website and the support from all of you:)

Please feel free to let me know what you think. I hope I am on the right track.

Sincerely,

Suze


PT Regimen - My terminology is off I am sure - sorry...

Exercise               Description                                           Reps      Sets    Hold Time     Times a Day

Ankle Stretch       Sit with rolled hand towel under ankle        1           1         5 min           3                               
Knee Stretch       Use soft band on foot to bring knee back    10         10       10                3
Ankle Pushes       Flexing the Ankle while leg is propped        15         4         none            3
Heel Slides          Sliding heel from flat to bent laying down    10        3         none            3

Quad Set            Squeeze down on rolled towel under knee   10        3         5 sec            2
Wall Slides         Lowering leg to an angle laying against wall    - 6 minutes   20 sec          2
Leg Raises         Raising leg with other one bent                    5          3        none             2
Rear Raises        Same thing but on my stomach                   5          3        none             2

Calf Raises        Standing up just raising heels off ground      10        2         none            2
Weight Shifting  Standing - Putting 75% of weight on            10       2          3 sec           2
                             injured leg

Meditation and Guided Imagery                                           30 minutes                        2
 
*Walking around with crutches practicing putting more weight on leg and less on arms.

* I also am still doing as much upper body as I can with free weights and bands: biceps, triceps, chest, lats, etc.

All this take a total of about 3 hours a day. I take only one day off a week. 
6/20/17 - ACL Tear
7/25/17 - ACL Patella Autograft Reconstruction
8/11/17 - Started PT

Offline Susan17

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Re: One Month Post-Op Patellar Tendon Autograft Reconstruction
« Reply #1 on: August 29, 2017, 05:18:25 PM »
Hey guys.....I didn't get any responses to my first post but am hoping to hear from you on this one.

I went down to one crutch and am now alternating from one to two. I am also at about 80 degrees ROM and I have a doctor's appt next Wednesday. I am not sure if he is going to want to do surgery to extend that.

I did go from 55 degrees to 80 in 2 weeks so there is progression.

I already do exercises 3 times a day but was told by someone that they did them (ROM exercises) 7 times a day. I am simply not able to withstand that much.

I am also concerned about this tailbone pain that I am having.

Any advice on that one? And anything that I posted above?

Thanks so much.
« Last Edit: August 29, 2017, 06:22:41 PM by Susan17 »
6/20/17 - ACL Tear
7/25/17 - ACL Patella Autograft Reconstruction
8/11/17 - Started PT

Offline Brandon123

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Re: One Month Post-Op Patellar Tendon Autograft Reconstruction
« Reply #2 on: August 31, 2017, 08:48:57 AM »
Hi there!

I think your PT seems to be going really well, if you feel that your PT protocol becomes too much some days, just back it off a little bit. It is easy to overdo PT and at least from my own experience, there is a fine line between doing too little and doing too much. You have to find your balance. Pain after PT that goes away in a few hours is OK, pain that stays for a day or two is not OK. Icing after PT is important I think. It helps me a lot. Also, sounds really good that your PT says he does not see any reason why you won't have a full recovery (or see any signs of problems)!

Maybe you have gotten that tailbone pain from all the PT? Are you sitting on the floor and doing stuff that might push on the tailbone etc? Hard surfaces? I wouldn't worry too much about it.

All in all, I think you are on the right track and the important thing is that you do see progress, albeit not as fast as you want :)

Furthermore, I am sure you will be able to go to Mt. Kilimanjaro in the future, but maybe you have to postpone that adventure for a while. When knee injuries hit us, we just need to put some plans on hold. Meanwhile, I think your plans with the RV sound awesome! Make it your short term goal for now to go down to Tampa and enjoy it there. Your 23 states tour is another thing to look forward to, that will be such a nice experience :)

Keep us posted on your progress!

RK sharp pain while running, diagnosis chondromalacia patellae 6/09
RK arthroscopic chondroplasty 9/09
RK rehab, recovery, 90% normal, started running again -> back to square one 5/15
RK diagnosis patellofemoral arthritis + LK diagnosis chondromalacia patellae 8/15 -> conservative treatment

Offline Susan17

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Re: One Month Post-Op Patellar Tendon Autograft Reconstruction
« Reply #3 on: September 07, 2017, 09:33:03 PM »
Thanks for your encouragement Brandon.

I am 6 weeks post-op and have been in tears all day. I was doing much better until yesterday. I saw my doctor and he tested the graft (PAINFUL) and said I can lose the full brace. He told me to take it off and "just walk." I refused because I knew I could not hold myself up. I tried with my one crutch and collapsed. The leg is just not strong enough to support the weight and I still have a slight bend in the knee - not bad - just a few degrees.

I went to PT and tweaked the darned thing when I tried the bike. Um...I don't think it was ready to go around fully for a 360 but it did accidentally. I then went through with PT and was in tears the entire time.

I was in pain all night and today have just felt defeated by this. Luckily this is my one day off and there is NO WAY I could have exercised today. I feel that horrible burning sensation that Vav had after his surgical knee manipulation.

I know I just tweaked it and the doctor would not have let me out of there if he didn't see I was progressing but I just cannot seem to bring myself to seeing any light when this happens.

I have an appt again tomorrow for PT and I am praying to God that I can get one of my three sessions in before the afternoon PT AND take a shower. I guess the best thing to do when this happens is rest for a day. I have done this several times since surgery and I know it happens but darn if it doesn't just bring me so far down every time!  :'(
6/20/17 - ACL Tear
7/25/17 - ACL Patella Autograft Reconstruction
8/11/17 - Started PT

Offline Brandon123

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Re: One Month Post-Op Patellar Tendon Autograft Reconstruction
« Reply #4 on: September 08, 2017, 03:22:11 PM »
Sounds like you are doing really well (except for painful PT). If you have pain for a day or two after the PT, try to take it a bit easier. Rest for a day if needed. And keep in mind that you are progressing, that the situation will only get better from here, and you have overcome major challenges before!
RK sharp pain while running, diagnosis chondromalacia patellae 6/09
RK arthroscopic chondroplasty 9/09
RK rehab, recovery, 90% normal, started running again -> back to square one 5/15
RK diagnosis patellofemoral arthritis + LK diagnosis chondromalacia patellae 8/15 -> conservative treatment

Offline Navtinho

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Re: One Month Post-Op Patellar Tendon Autograft Reconstruction
« Reply #5 on: September 20, 2017, 06:57:32 PM »
Hey Susan, hows the recovery and PT progressing ? from the list you provided, you seem to be ticking all the right boxes in terms of your rehab regimen !

Dont let those incidents bring you down I had quite a few of them during my PT and recovery and as long as your doctor thinks you fine it all ends well, as Brandon said just take a day or two off,apply ice regularly and soldier on when you feel you can

The most useful thing that my physio told me was :
" You rather do the standard requirements properly on a daily basis, rather than go really hard on one day and then take two to recover"
And it makes sense cos consistent work and gradual ramp up gives you a sense of continuous improvement, but if you you have to stop for a few days it could bring you down.
Slow and steady wins the race, just keep at it and things will improve.

Take it easy, still early days so there is no need to fight time get anxious just yet.
Things usually improve quicker after the first 3-4 months as you start building confidence in the knee.

Offline Susan17

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Re: One Month Post-Op Patellar Tendon Autograft Reconstruction
« Reply #6 on: September 24, 2017, 10:01:57 PM »
Hello my sweet fellow gimpies....thanks for checking in. Yep I am moving right along, albeit drudgingly. The surgeon and PT say I am doing well. I am walking with one crutch and just starting with the brace unlocked. I am leaving the NY area in 3 weeks and plan to be in my new, smaller, functional ACL Don Joy brace and walking with a cane maybe. I cannot wait to get rid of this gigantic brace. My insurance is not paying for the functional brace. Um...I think they are pretty sick of paying for me being an idiot.

I am driving and riding my motorcycle, even though I am "not supposed to." I still have no stamina but work out while sitting on my bed and also am lifting weights still. I am also riding the stationary bike so that is pretty cool. My leg looks so deformed still so it will be quite a while before I can build up my quad to size. On day at a time.

I walked about 4,000 steps yesterday and that was wayyyy over my limit so I need to keep it down to about 1,000 still. I cannot wait to walk again.

Hope you all are doing well and am sending out positive and healing vibes:)

Susan
6/20/17 - ACL Tear
7/25/17 - ACL Patella Autograft Reconstruction
8/11/17 - Started PT

Offline Ts2011

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Re: One Month Post-Op Patellar Tendon Autograft Reconstruction
« Reply #7 on: October 11, 2017, 02:28:16 AM »
Sounds good susun., riding the bike yes, must of felt good on bike,, sounds like good news. Keep on keeping on, .take good care

Offline jeffmc

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Re: One Month Post-Op Patellar Tendon Autograft Reconstruction
« Reply #8 on: November 10, 2017, 12:01:10 AM »
Hello my sweet fellow gimpies....thanks for checking in. Yep I am moving right along, albeit drudgingly. The surgeon and PT say I am doing well. I am walking with one crutch and just starting with the brace unlocked. I am leaving the NY area in 3 weeks and plan to be in my new, smaller, functional ACL Don Joy brace and walking with a cane maybe. I cannot wait to get rid of this gigantic brace. My insurance is not paying for the functional brace. Um...I think they are pretty sick of paying for me being an idiot.

I am driving and riding my motorcycle, even though I am "not supposed to." I still have no stamina but work out while sitting on my bed and also am lifting weights still. I am also riding the stationary bike so that is pretty cool. My leg looks so deformed still so it will be quite a while before I can build up my quad to size. On day at a time.

I walked about 4,000 steps yesterday and that was wayyyy over my limit so I need to keep it down to about 1,000 still. I cannot wait to walk again.

Hope you all are doing well and am sending out positive and healing vibes:)

Susan

Hi Susan,

I was reading your story. Its been a couple months since your last update. How has the biking helped ? Walking almost normally yet?

Best of luck


Offline Susan17

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Re: One Month Post-Op Patellar Tendon Autograft Reconstruction
« Reply #9 on: November 10, 2017, 02:54:08 PM »
Hi...ty for replying. To be honest it's not that great. It's not horrible either though. I am about to switch PT's again because I was shloffed off on an intern who cannot manually manipulate my leg, therefore, I can't get anymore bend out. My doctor warned me of this and told me to leave if this ever happened.

Sadly I think they were just kind of giving up on me. I am walking now and am only a degree off from extension and I am only 8 degrees away from my other leg with flexion at 122 degrees.

I think the worse part is 1) the mental part - the depression has set in to stay for a bit because I cannot even get cleared for anything but walking and bike riding. I cannot even play bad minton. 2) I am behind the curve because I cannot take the pain of the later phase rehab - running, hopping and full squats cause immense pain later in the day. If I had some pain medication I could probably do it but without it it's too much.

Right now I am almost 4 months out and I am only doing mini-squats, leg balancing, stairs, bike, etc. I even stopped lifting weights on my upper body from the depression and feeling so burnt out from all of this and now I am having a hard time controlling my weight. I am starting to feel less like an athlete and bodybuilder and more like a beached whale.

I am about to see a pain doctor (again) who may put me on a long acting pain med to get through this last phase of PT. OR he may continue to insult me and treat me like a drug addict. Who knows. If he got my records and analyzed my blood he will see that I am just your average boring person.

I don't want to get on pain meds at all, or any meds for that matter. But I have to rehab this leg and at this point I really don't know what to do.

I realize that this is affecting my mental state and I am speaking with a therapist etc. and am doing everything I can to take care of myself but as someone on here said. These knee issues and surgeries are so long, painful and are very depressing. Much much more than we initially realize.

Thank you so much for checking in on me. I really hope that this takes a turn soon.

6/20/17 - ACL Tear
7/25/17 - ACL Patella Autograft Reconstruction
8/11/17 - Started PT















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