Question - ACL Repair

by sarah
(san francisco)

I tore the ACL on my left knee years ago and had the patella (not sure the spelling sorry...) tendon surgery.


I recently tore my right ACL and I was wondering what your thoughts are about not going through the surgery and building the muscles around the knee instead.

Unfortunately I am quite active and do sports that require my knee to be strong and stable. Which is why I am leaning towards having the surgery (such as snow boarding, rock climbing and kite surfing.) Do you have any patients who have opted not to have surgery and have had great success?

Also I bruised the bones in my knee when the injury happened and it is very sore, do you have any specific thoughts regarding bone bruises? And what I can do for the pain?

I am a photographer and have to work physically, and besides the shooting days I have been completely resting it and icing and staying off it. Should I keep using crutches and completely rest it? Or is a little activity good each day? I have to wait a few weeks before surgery anyway to let the swelling go down, but I would love to hear your opinions.

Thank you for all of the stretches and information on your site. I am looking forward to hearing from you.
Thanks,
Sarah


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Nov 05, 2015
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I think that NEW
by: Marco Gonzales

I think that the bone contusions actually may cause more of the pain associated with the injury than the actual tearing of the ligament.

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Aug 27, 2015
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great comments NEW
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Jan 16, 2013
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NEWLY INJURED ACL NEW
by: Anonymous

Got a complete acl tear last 111012. i havent done a surgery yet. If i opt not to go through a surgery yet..whato would be the best option..im still saving for the budget for the screw for the surgery...will i be able to go back to long distance running with out having a surgery for the maintime..is there any program you can recommend so i could go back to running while not having the surgery yet...

Oct 02, 2008
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thank you
by: Anonymous

thank you for your helpful and clear comments... It coincides with everything I have heard, read and thought. I appreciate your time!
Thanks,
Sarah

Oct 02, 2008
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surgery or not
by: Bart - SII

I have had a few patients who opted to not have the surgery and did alright, once they went through about 6-8 weeks of rehab to get their muscle function up...but, none of them were active athletes - most just did some recreational things like walking for fitness and normal daily activities.

I have had patients who finished a season after an ACL tear (and several weeks of rehab) but they always had surgery afterwards, and usually they had significant meniscus tears which I believe wouldn't have been there if they hadn't played on the ACL deficient knee.

I am a firm believer in reconstructions in younger, active people - athletes or not. The ACL plays a vital role in knee stability and without it, even with great muscle function, the knee gets extra stress and will break down faster. So, I recommend the surgery to anyone who asks - as well as comprehensive rehabilitation after the surgery.

Bone bruises are seen in the vast majority of ACL tears - they are very common and they take awhile to heal. I think that the bone contusions actually may cause more of the pain associated with the injury than the actual tearing of the ligament.

I would recommend staying active, but not overdoing it. Let pain be your guide, as well as swelling. If your pain or swelling increase, you are probably doing too much. Working on gentle range of motion, light strengthening, and resting is a good approach.

Good luck with your recovery. Keep us posted on your progress!

Bart

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