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Author Topic: Ruptured Patellar Tendon Surgery  (Read 1261502 times)

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Offline madvillain

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Re: Ruptured Patellar Tendon Surgery
« Reply #5475 on: January 08, 2015, 01:02:20 AM »
Took the braces off at the gym this afternoon and my calves are starting to look quite deflated and my quads look smaller as well.   Oh well, motivation to keep working.

Well, on a positive note I'm now doing stairs much more naturally and even realized that no, you don't come down flat footed on the step going up -- you're on the ball of your foot and push up through the calf through the quad.

Go figure.  Eureka moment today on the way up to my apt.  In many ways having to do stairs everyday (not a lot, but a couple short flights) is a blessing in disguise as it gives me good practice and I have nice railings to steady myself on.

Going down is certainly harder don't trust myself at all, although stepping up and off curbs is now a lot better.  ROM is getting a bit better but still stuck around maybe 45-50 degrees.  Getting to 90 by 6 weeks seems a bit of a stretch at this point but I will be patient.

I really want to put this all in a diary and I promise I won't clutter up this thread too much more I just need to organize a bunch of the videos I've done. 

Thanks for listening everyone seems like the double RPTs are multiplying here.  It's good to have company, although as I said sorry and much respect to everyone going through this.
« Last Edit: January 08, 2015, 01:03:54 AM by madvillain »

Offline madvillain

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Re: Ruptured Patellar Tendon Surgery
« Reply #5476 on: January 08, 2015, 05:41:42 AM »
I wanted to link this man's video, as he is truly an inspiration and everything he says is 100% true and accurate.  If you are scared about rehab or surgery just know that with an attitude like Kyle's you're gonna blow through your doc's and your own expectations.

He touches on all the emotional stuff as well and it's so true that if you allow it to this injury will bring you closer to yourself, your family, and your friends.

Kyle blew out his knee, and when I say blew out I almost mean it literally.  He had a full RPT in addition to numerous other significant ligament damage.  He was told by his surgeon he'd "never be normal again".

Well, if you follow his progress, I think you'd say his surgeon was right, but not in the way you'd probably expect.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=iWli-i98fWU

Offline manttila

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Re: Ruptured Patellar Tendon Surgery
« Reply #5477 on: January 08, 2015, 11:56:56 AM »
Just providing an update.  As a previous poster said, my recovery seems to have been off the chart on the positive side, so I am posting this for people who have just started as an example of something possible but maybe not typical.  For me I think it was more genetic in that I have always been loose jointed.  20 years ago I had the ankle in my other leg tightened up.  Today it is a loose as prior to the surgery!

I am about 12 weeks since the injury and surgery (Oct 17 and 21).  At this point I have gotten my full range of motion back but far from the strength.  I am able to walk up and down stairs slowly with much more confidence going up.  Always with a handrail!

I love my PT guy and go 3 days a week.  2 hours at each session.  Heat to start, various exercises, massage, ice.  I may be sore right after but the next day it is gone.  Not pain at surgery point mainly on the side of the knee which I think is more related to

Relative to the gait.  When walking I try to be focused on walking with a bent knee.  It may look funny right now but long term I can see where it will strengthen up my leg and get my "brain" in gear on how to walk properly.

Thanks to all that have posted their experiences which has been very helpful especially during those very difficult early weeks.  I still have a way to go but I have learned that patience and hard work are key.




Offline John42

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Re: Ruptured Patellar Tendon Surgery
« Reply #5478 on: January 09, 2015, 07:53:24 AM »
Hi RPT Chums

Just sent my knee a birthday card - 12 years ago slipped on black ice and bang.....

I have ended up with 105 ROM - walking up a hill is hard work - cannot run after a bus - knee still painful at night and wearing a full lenght compression stocking - but hey, life is back to normality - so work at it.

JohnK/ Machester  UK
Ruptured Patella Tendon January 9 2003
Slipped on black ice.  Manchester UK

Complete Ruptured Tendon

Offline dtr42

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Re: Ruptured Patellar Tendon Surgery
« Reply #5479 on: January 10, 2015, 09:24:28 PM »
Happy New Year Guys and Gals, not been on forum for a while as life has got busy .Been a year and 2 months since snap day my rehab has been very good with some downs but nothing major ,I have just done my first real winter walk with crampons on a wee hill called Ben Nevis  ;D with 2 foot of snow ,knee was fine but quads ended up very stiff as the snow was deep ,I  did notice that my knee was  tight after reaching the summit and think it was due to the cold [-8]rather than any problem with knee.I hope that anyone that has this injury takes heart  from the many successes that are on this great forum and that with time ,a good surgeon , physio and most of all PATIENCE ,the recovery from this injury can be surprisingly good .

Offline Thomas99

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Re: Ruptured Patellar Tendon Surgery
« Reply #5480 on: January 11, 2015, 01:09:13 PM »
I'm Wondering how much knee swelling fellow RPT sufferers have experienced ?

Has anyone had trouble with persistent knee swelling ?

I'm 7 months post injury and 1st surgery and currently have 10cm (24%) of swelling around injured left knee 52cm compared to right knee circumference of 42cm. Pic attached.

Trying to patiently wait for my 2nd surgery (11 days time) when the surgeon will try to fix the 1st failed surgery attempt. I'm amazed at the amount of swelling still evident 7 months post injury, but probably related to the current large high grade partial tear, which 2nd surgeon is going to fix (fingers crossed).


Offline madvillain

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Re: Ruptured Patellar Tendon Surgery
« Reply #5481 on: January 11, 2015, 09:40:25 PM »
Ok guys I have some advice for loosening up those knees after surgery!  It is by the far the most effective thing I have done.  In fact, after I did 10 minutes of it I walked up stairs the most naturally I have since the injury, it was a breakthrough -- THE ROWING MACHINE.

I was lucky enough to talk to a client of mine that had a hip replacement and he's a pretty hard charging older gentleman and he told me "the one thing that really helped me after surgery was the rowing machine".

Turns out, this guy was right, and then some.   Heel slides are fine, working with your PT as he/she bends it is fine, but if you want to really get the blood flowing and break up that scar tissue just spend 10 minutes on the rowing machine followed by some gentle patellar mobilizations (you can find guides online, basically just involves gently pushy your kneecap around).  Using the rowing machine I am now almost at 90 degrees ROM and that is an increase of probably 20-30 degrees just this week! 

Today is exactly 5 weeks since surgery.  Week 5 was a tremendous week for me.  I managed to hit the gym 5 times this week and I have been practicing walking without the braces (safety first everyone, make sure you have good quad control) and man it feels great.  The first time I took off the braces and walked it felt so awkward, this was monday.  Today, on Sunday, I have walked without them all week for 5-10 minute stretches at the gym (just circling the dance floor they have) and I am already feeling the results.  Gait is much more natural, the "awkward" feeling is receding and using the handrails I even have been doing some up and down on a slope.

I continue to have slight pain (like a 1.5 on the scale) sometimes when just resting or standing that usually comes for like 5 minutes, goes away for a couple hours, then comes back.  It this point, I'm pretty sure it's just the scar tissue breaking up, which is a good thing.  Swelling is minimal.  Knee caps are high, but from what I've read, that's to be expected.

Keep up the good work everyone as always work works and listen to your body.
« Last Edit: January 11, 2015, 09:47:02 PM by madvillain »

Offline John42

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Re: Ruptured Patellar Tendon Surgery
« Reply #5482 on: January 11, 2015, 10:45:13 PM »
Hi Mat

Excellent, however a word of warning - don`t push it - your tendon has not healed as yet

Keep posting

Best

JohnK/ Manchester UK
Ruptured Patella Tendon January 9 2003
Slipped on black ice.  Manchester UK

Complete Ruptured Tendon

Offline madvillain

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Re: Ruptured Patellar Tendon Surgery
« Reply #5483 on: January 17, 2015, 07:04:20 AM »
6 weeks to the day of injury for me, and one less day from surgery.  Made some good progress this week got to about 100 degrees ROM, maybe 90-95 conservatively.  Can sit much more naturally now with my knees bent.  Knees get stiff when bent though for a while, take it that's typical.

Visited the surgeon for the 6 week followup today, he had me do a couple strength tests (straight leg raise and flexion from 90 degrees to straight) and then cleared me to drive and remove the braces.  He did an integrity check of the repairs and everything looked good.  He told me the goal is 120-130 degrees by 12 weeks. 

In general at this point I think the surgeon is a bit, and I say this with incredible respect "checked out".  In his mind I'm sure 90% of his work is done and now it's 90% on me to do my work.   That's more than fair, he did the repair, that's like (for our UK readers) asking your side to hold a 3-0 lead in the second 45. 

He mentioned "starting PT" and I kinda just said "man I do PT every damn day".  Formal?  It's the Internet age, any reasonably curious mind can find all the resources they need if they look hard enough.

At this point I"m looking for formal PT to give me some tips on ergonomics of sports and walking, help me with targeted exercises and ROM stuff, but I'm my own agent in this recovery and I've already learned plenty just from the myriad people online (including this forum) that have undergone and recovered from the injury.

I had a friend in town today and we did some great walking around Seattle including walking up partially  Queen Anne hill to go up to Kerry Park (Mt Rainier behind clouds, but 55 and sunny up there in January!).
 
A bit shocked (but not really) how bad my cardio is after ascending to the top out of breath (200 feet, lol, come on, I used to do that in my sleep), but also very happy with how my leg power is coming along.  Stairs are easier every day, with practice of course!  Gotta practice.

And of course, safety first!  Surgeon emphasized this again at the meeting.  At this point, I've already pushed the rock about 1/4 up the hill, the hell if I'm going to jump up and down and let it roll all the way down again.
« Last Edit: January 17, 2015, 07:36:26 AM by madvillain »

Offline Kaddydee

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Re: Ruptured Patellar Tendon Surgery
« Reply #5484 on: January 17, 2015, 10:48:22 AM »
Hi all,

After a really slow start post op, things are starting to move at a good speed now.  Last week (week 8) I took my first step without crutches and can now limp around the house - it's not a pretty walk but I know things will improve at a rapid rate now.  I use one crutch whenever I go out - even this gets a bit scary on uneven ground and around lots of people.

My bend is nearly at 90 degrees.  Unfortunately, I feel the wire poke into me (at tibia end of PT) at 90 degrees and also when I bend the knee while walking. It's pretty uncomfortable so I'm not sure I'll be able to bend past 90 until the wire comes out at 6 months.

Today I did my first straight leg raise (with 5 degree lag).  Once again it was not strong at all but it was a good feeling to hit another milestone.

Still nowhere near being able to extend the leg from a 90 degree bend.

I saw my surgeon last week.  As always, he was not positive that the surgery will have been a success because it was a chronic case.  He did apologize for being a "misery guts" but he said my case is such an unknown and he doesn't want me to get depressed if it doesn't work.  I'm determined to be a success case and I've told my physio that his main job is to be my advocate and be positive and optimistic for me.  He's taken this to heart and I always leave physio with a spring in my step - i can do anything!

My wire only started hurting after I saw my surgeon and I don't see him for another 6 weeks.  Have any of you had trouble with the wire? When did you have the wire out? When you had the wire out, was your recovery affected at all? 

Madvillain, I also think the rowing machine is a fantastic form of therapy.  I used it a lot last op and will start again this week.  Great form of cardio and great for getting that knee to bend.  My physio got me row with left leg only, right leg only and then both legs. 

That's it for now.

Kath

Offline madvillain

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Re: Ruptured Patellar Tendon Surgery
« Reply #5485 on: January 19, 2015, 11:22:55 PM »
That's pretty good progress Kath!  Certainly encouraging that you have that ROM already and a positive attitude is certainly your biggest asset in the recovery. 

Freaking surgeons, it's their nature to be downers and I get that, you never want to be on the wrong side of a prognosis, same deal in my industry.  Better to under promise and over deliver but it's up to us to over deliver!

There is a part of the quad muscle called the Vastus medialis obliquus  (You will see this in PT guides as "VOM") that is the primary muscle involved in extending the lower leg.  (trust me I had no clue it even existed until I had this injury and was doing research) There are some targeted PT exercises you can do to help with that specific part of the quad.  One I like is the resistance band, it's must safer for us ortho patients than the leg press machines.  Just grab the easiest band at the gym (usually red) or order one on Amazon and use it just like the leg press machine -- sitting, loop it around a solid pole (table leg usually works at my house) and tie it off around mid shin, and then slowly go back with your ROM as far as you can and then extend gently.

If it's too much tension obviously just move your chair closer to where it's looped around the table leg, or whatever you have it looped around.

My new tormentor is THE BAR STOOL.  Ugh, so much stuff when out and about this weekend with my friend that seemed designed specifically to antagonize the recent ortho patient, but the damn bar stools were the worst.  Legs ended up just dangling during a dinner event and I had to stand up every 10 minutes to get the stiffness out.  Also not a huge fan of Japanese style low chairs.  Had some fun with those too.

All in all though life is good: going up stairs is no longer a challenge, and going down them, while still a challenge, is easier than ever.  Got about 18 days until my New Orleans trip and I'm hoping to get another dozen or so good PT sessions in before then to get that leg power up even more.

The exercise bike with resistance set at 10-12 is my new obsession.

Offline JC55

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Re: Ruptured Patellar Tendon Surgery
« Reply #5486 on: January 23, 2015, 03:40:20 AM »
Wow, lots of activity and new members on the site.  To all the newbies, HI and I'm glad to read that you all seem to be rocking it!  First, happy 12th anniversary John.  Being at 16+ months I feel as though my surgery was a lifetime ago...must feel likes ages to you. Quick update: I feel great. As I've mentioned in past posts, I am a very active, tall, slim 51 year-old who played basketball (and a little football) in college.  After my surgery I took a very methodical approach to rehab but my main goal was to allow my body time to heal. I did my PT religiously and benefited from having a very experienced OS affiliated with a local university basketball team.  I LOVED massaging my knee and really going after the adhesions and breaking up scar tissue.  The OS explained to me that the scar tissue will transform over time (ususally when I was complaining about some clicking) and man was he right. The only time I think about my knee now is when a kneel and I sense some areas of numbness.  Really, the only issues I had during rehab was being depressed.  My depression wasn't immobilizing but just stretches of time when I was really down.  My wife was an angel through it all!  I also have all my RPTers to thank.  So, until next time...peace and success to all.

PS: Tom, I am not a double RPT...but you guys are my heroes.
Jerry, Kentucky, USA
Complete tear of left patella tendon, Sept 8, 2013
Surgery Sept 9, 2013, no wire

Offline bballkingofnba

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Re: Ruptured Patellar Tendon Surgery
« Reply #5487 on: January 23, 2015, 03:57:35 AM »
what do the knees look like 16 months after JC?

Offline Thomas99

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Re: Ruptured Patellar Tendon Surgery
« Reply #5488 on: January 23, 2015, 09:38:57 AM »
Surgery update:

I had my 2nd surgery attempt to repair my ruptured left patellar tendon yesterday. OS advised surgery went well, but the ruptured patella tendon was a mess. The surgeon virtually cut out all of the old patellar tendon replacing it via grafting on two hamstrings tendons from my right leg. Hamstring from left leg used in original surgery graft.

7.5 months post original injury and 1st surgery attempt.

Even though suffering further increased pain and restricted mobility, glad to be back onto the correct healing path.

Feeling positive about future healing and telling myself to keep the patience mantra.

Offline JC55

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Re: Ruptured Patellar Tendon Surgery
« Reply #5489 on: January 24, 2015, 05:03:51 AM »
King, knees look great.  I'm very fortunate.  FYI; left knee was the injured one.
« Last Edit: January 24, 2015, 05:05:33 AM by JC55 »
Jerry, Kentucky, USA
Complete tear of left patella tendon, Sept 8, 2013
Surgery Sept 9, 2013, no wire















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