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ACL reconstruction surgery
Hi everyone. I fell while skiing a couple of weeks ago and tore a ligament in my knee, the ACL to be specific. I've just seen the doctor and he recommended that I get surgery to reconstruct it given that I am young and like to do sports. It sounds like a pretty routine surgery (done arthroscopically) and my insurance covers it so having it does not worry me too much, but I wanted to see if anyone has ever experienced a torn ACL and whether you had the reconstructive surgery. Any advice and anecdotes are much appreciated.
(((Ajax))). I have had it and it wasn't as bad as I thought. Just the PT afterwards. I was out of the hospital the same day. I'd save the pain pills for the first week of PT! That was the worst of it.
Good luck, Ajax. I've heard that the rehab is hard work, but you can come back in really good shape.
My sister tore both of her ACLs while in high school (a year apart). She bounced back from the surgery pretty quickly, just wore a brace for awhile and did PT. She was able to resume normal activity, and I don't think had any restrictions.
She did have a pretty gnarly scar, but if the surgery is athroscopic, it sounds like it may be less invasive than it used to be.
While I've never torn my ACL, my knees are pretty bad due to a rare bone disease I have. I've had both my kneecaps stablized and the left knee's been scoped three times thanks to menicus problems. So I've got experience when it comes to knee issues.
The advice about saving the pain pills, if you can, for that first week of PT is very sound advice. Especially if there's a pretty big gap between your surgery and the start of PT. You'll be amazed how quickly those tendons and ligaments stiffen up when you don't use them and those first few times stretching/using them will be a major owie. So if you can save your Pain Meds, or get by w/little of them after the first couple of days post surgery, for the start of PT is a very good thing. If you can that is.
Second, if you know where you can access a Recumbent Stationary Bike, take advantage of it. After my first scoping, the Physio I had told me that w/how my knees are and that I'm on Predinsone to help control another health issue (When you're on it long term for management of something chronic, it'll go after the joints), it would be an excellent investment for me. The reason being is the difference in the force your legs/joints are experiencing.
On a normal bike, you're pedaling down and therefore putting more pressure/force on your joints. W/a Recumbent, you're pushing out instead, so you're not putting as much force/pressure on the joints to try and absorb. That way, you're still getting the benefits that Cycling does give you and your knees, but none of the disadvantages. That's how Leslie explained it to me and close to nine years later, I'm so glad I listened to her. Not only has it helped my knees post knee surgery, but it's also helped speed up my recovery after my last scoping *and* a pretty major foot surgery as well.
In fact, I used it so much, the tension finally let go on it last Summer and Santa was good enough to bring me a new one for Christmas. So they are out there to buy, but are also in Exercise Clubs as well. Just be prepared for some odd looks when you ask about them if you're looking to buy one, as they're not *that* common, but they are out there.
Anyway...As I said, I highly reccomend the use of one to help w/your recovery if you can find one to use.
The only other thing I can think of is to listen to your Doctor/Ortho and Physio. Regardless of how you "think" the knee is doing, it might feel great and you're back to weight bearing on it, but the worst thing you can do is push it when they're telling you the knee really isn't ready for more than that. That's one sure way to either retear the ACL or do even worse damage to the knee. So listen to your Medical Team.
Hope that helps and Good Luck w/the Surgery and Recovery!!