Michelle's ACL Surgery

by Michelle
(Ohio)

This was 3 days after surgery.

This was 3 days after surgery.

I could not figure out how to add to my current page or to add a picture of my knee so here I start again.

I am starting to feel discouraged. My main concern is being ready to go back to work on the 1st of December. (I don't have enough sick days and I'll lose my insurance if I don't go back)I met with the physcial therapist today, and she said I was doing really well with the exercises, but did not add any more for me to do at home.

I won't see them again until Monday and I feel like I could have done more there today. I have been doing these exercises for almost 5 days now. I am supposed to go back to work on December 1st so I wanted to schedule 3 visits next week, but they said that was too much. I don't understand- if I am doing the exercises at home anyway, I would rather do one set there so they can tell me if I am completing them correctly and give me feedback.

They are very nice at this clinic, but I was seeing another PT before surgery that I loved, but I can't go to them because they are only allowed to take patients who have referrals from THEIR surgeons.
That really stinks because they were good PTs. A patient shouldn't be punished for not using their "not so great" surgeons.

I guess my knee is more swollen than it should be which made me sad. The PT said I was using the pillows wrong....the sheet the doctor gave me said NOT to place the pillows under my knee, only put them under my heel. That was very painful, but now I know I could have had the pillows "long-ways" and a lot higher.

I am just trying to stay positive but I didn't think I was going to be in this much pain. This blog is the only thing that has keep me sane being able to read everyone's stories and get feedback.

I am going to try to post a pic of my knee. It doesn't even look like my own leg. I have nicknamed it "Flubber Blubber."

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Nov 30, 2008
glad you are ok
by: Cathlyn

Michelle,
Thanks for letting us know you are ok and doing better. So glad you didn't have an infection and that you are on the mend. Sounds like you are a woman of action and a go-getter. I'd follow your PT's instructions- best not to over do things- TTT (Things Take Time) Take care-

Nov 30, 2008
Thanks..... things are starting to look up!
by: Michelle

I checked with my doctor and luckily it was just bad bruising. I bruise easily and they said it was prob. from the "mover" they had me in after surgery.
Well, it is 16 days post-op and I am doing pretty well. The pain from the bruising is pretty much gone and I can do my exercises without pain. I can ride the bike forwards and backwards, and I am hoping the PT will let me go to one crutch.
My body wants to walk so badly. The PT is going SO SLOW. They still haven't given me any knew exercises in the 13 days I have been doing them, and they won't let me do full weight bearing yet. I know I need to be patient....but I am wondering if they are going too slow b/c they day they let me "rock" on the bike, they said I could do it at home but NOT to go all the way over. I went home and went all the way around both ways with no pain within 2 minutes.

Nov 25, 2008
check with your doc
by: Anonymous

My dance teacher got two very serious infections after her ACL surgery. Felt fine first few days, then at end of week started feeling worse- infection went down her leg.(happened 2x) Call your doc & talk to him now.

Nov 23, 2008
Need "Bruise Pain" advise
by: Michelle

In the past two days, the entire right side of my thigh has become bruised, as well as the left side of my calf. I am experiencing unbearable pain whenever I move my leg.
I was walking with crutches pretty well, and able to do leg raises without pain, but now the bruising is making it nearly impossible. Tightening my quad is very painful now too. It is 10 times worse than the ripping feeling I get in my knee! The pharmacist said all I can do is ice the area, but is there anything else to relive the pain?

Nov 23, 2008
hang in there!
by: Anonymous

Michelle,
Thanks for your comments on my story.

It seems after all the reading I've done, that patience seems to be paramount in ACL surg. recovery. It takes months before the graft can be incorporated into our systems- meanwhile we need to build up the other muscles around it AND make sure we straighten our legs so we don't get the wrong scar tissue build up. (Easy for me to say, as I'm 3 weeks till my surgery yet)

Try visualizing yourself 9 mos from now- dancing.
Put music on. Use positive scents- vanillas, cinnamons, etc. Put up photos or videos of dancers at their peak. This is the reason we opted for surgery. Patience, exercise, and focus are needed for the next few months so we can obtain years of doing what we love!

Remember, this is the temporary stuff. I think your leg looks great considering what you just went through!

Wishing you a better week, and I know I'll need your support when my time comes!!!

Take care-

Nov 20, 2008
Flubber blubber
by: Bart - SII

your knee looks good - aside from the scar and the swelling. You sound like you are doing great. Just keep plugging away at those exercises - the straight leg raises and heel slides are all you really need to be doing right now - just keep focusing on getting that knee as straight as possible when you lift - I tell my patients to lift from the heel first...try to make your heel come up off of the floor before any other part of your knee - that will help your quad fire and improve your extension.

you can put the pillows anywhere you want to, just make sure that you are letting your knee relax into full extension when you are resting - that is the key. We tell people to put it under the heel so that they don't sit around for hours and hours everyday with their knee slightly bent - next thing you know it won't straighten out.

Just keep asking your PT what else you can be doing at home - make them give you a couple new exercises everytime you see them - that way you can push them to push you.

hang in there, it will get better in the next couple weeks, and before you know it, you will be back to normal (except for the sports, that comes later)

Bart

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