Wendy's ACL/Med. meniscus + STAPH infection

by Wendy
(Lincoln, CA)

Hi, my name is Wendy and I’m 34 years old. I tore my right ACL & damaged my medial meniscus on April 23 while exercising at an indoor trampoline place called SkyZone in Rocklin, CA (something I do not suggest doing for anyone, no mater how many calories it burns). I felt the “pop” and hoped that it was nothing, but in my heart I knew what I had done….I had the same thing happen 17 years earlier to my left knee while skiing.


On June 12, I had the surgery and used my hamstring for the graft, surgery went fine and I went home to recover. A week later at the post-op appt. things also seemed to be going well, and I was cleared to start physical therapy again, (I did 3 weeks of it prior to the surgery). Therapy was going well, but I would get extremely swollen and lots of pain afterwards- which I expected to be normal. By the 3rd week my pain & swelling would not go away- even with the drugs so I went back to my doctor. He drained me and advised me that I would be going in for emergency surgery because there was clearly an infection of some sort. So on July 2, (3 weeks after the first surgery) I had the “emergency surgery”, they cleaned me out and I remained in the hospital for 5 days. Final diagnosis was a staph infection. I was sent home with a pick line and 14 days of high dose antibiotics.

So my recovery has not been text book. I have two young children and work full-time, so it’s been hard on everyone, but my husband has been wonderful threw everything. I’m still not able to walk with out crutches; it’s been 3 weeks since the 2nd surgery. PT is going well and I’m starting to be more active (e.g.: not just sitting in bed all day, making it out to the TV room), but still icing & elevating when it flares up. My main fear is that I still have or will get the staph infection back, since I did not have the “normal” symptoms for infection the first time. Hope this helps someone….staph infections can happen, unlikely, but can happen.

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Jul 03, 2016
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Same NEW
by: Anonymous

My son is currently going through the exact same thing. We are hoping he will be able to get back to "normal" again - climbing being very important to him. Keeping our fingers crossed. Can't imagine what his life will be like if he can't get back outdoors doing what he loves.

May 24, 2012
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responce to Skyzone NEW
by: Wendy

Sorry to hear Skyzone injury! I'm doing fine now, but it's been almost 3 years and my knee does not bother me at all. Best of luck, keep up with the PT for the best recovery & let me know if you have any other questions!

May 22, 2012
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Skyzone is no place for fun.. NEW
by: Anonymous

Hi Wendy! I will not be going back to Skyzone! It was fun but so dangerous! Im only 14 and my first time going I tore 2 ligaments in my ankle. I had to stop EVERYTHING. I usually go to the gym daily and I do gymnastics. I had to stop all of that because of this injury. After 3 months of pyhsical therapy and multiple casts my ligaments wouldn't heal.. so.. I got surgery. It's been almost 20 days since my surgery! How'd your's go?

Jan 20, 2011
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So sorry Missy!
by: Wendy

WOW Missy, your story sounds sooo bad! I hope you are having a better recover now! The good news is that back to normal activites for a while now. I would say in Feb. 2010 I was able to run w/o pain, not that I'm a runner but it did not hurt to attempt to run anymore. The first time I attempted to wakeboard last spring I was a bit nervous, but I did a lot of strength training from Jan - June of 2010. And it helped because wakeboard was a breeze and no pain to my knee at all. In a few weeks I'm going snowboarding fir the first time, and I'm not worried.

Getting back the muscle atrophy is hard, and takes time! Don't try to rush it! I was very lucky to have the support of my husband to take care of my two little ones, and my inlaws and outlaws too. Especially during recovery and the three times a week physical therapy. Hang in there, you'll be goo as new soon! Let me know if you have any other question.

Jan 19, 2011
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5 knee surgeries in 12 weeks due to staph
by: Missy

My first surgery was in Aug then 10 days after surgery started with fever and major pain. My doc drained my knee at the hospital then had to do the first surgery that day. While in the hospital they had do go in again to clean it out again. After the 3rd surgery I went home with Picc line then the infection came back. My Ortho went in for the 4th time and removed all the hardware a ACL piece. Spent another week in the hospital with another 4 week of IV picc line treatment. One week after the last treatment I started having issues again and this time the Ortho cut my knee completely open. Spent another 10 days in the hospital with 4 more weeks of IV Picc line treatment. My last Picc line was taken out 2 days before Christmas. However now I'm 35 years old with a
ACL brace on and a walker. My Ortho is worried about doing therapy on my knee at this point. My knee is so painful and I have no strength to do anything. My Ortho is talking about waiting a year before going back in to repair anything. How long did you have to wait to have yours repaired?

Jun 30, 2010
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help !!
by: Anonymous

I also have had the same experience, ruptured my ACL MCL LCL and menicus skiing in march, i had a ham string graft in April and recovered well for the first 7 days then developed a huge effusion ( staph A ) which needed washout and 6 weeks of IV antibiotics..... unfortunatley I need to back for more surgery this week and who knows what the surgeon is going to find, i am unable to fully extend or put full wieght through my knee and the whole joint is unstable ...

has anyone else experienced 3rd lot of surgery ?

good luck to all

Jun 13, 2010
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I am going through it now
by: Anonymous

I had acl surgery on my right knee almost four weeks ago and was flying through physical therapy, I was riding the stationary was able to get 116 degrees by the end of the second week.

But last week the pain became unbearable and I didn't sleep for two days and became very nauseated, saw my doctor the next day and he pulled out a huge syringe filled with a cloudy, staph infectious fluid. So I too had to have emergency surgery, he had to pull out my recent patella grapt as well.

I'm still in the hospital now with my pick line waiting to go home. I was just how you are now and how long you had to wait for your second acl reconstruction on your right knee? I'm 20 years old and really bummed out, do you have any recommendations on as to where my next graft should come from, i.e. my left knee, hamstring, or a cadaver?

Thanks and God Bless

Aug 17, 2009
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my update
by: Wendy

Sorry to hear you got a staph infection also. But the good news is I'm doing great! It's been 1mo. + 15 days since my 2nd operation and about two weeks ago I started feeling better and stronger, esp. at physical therapy. Last week I ditched my crutches, and my knee seems to be getting stronger everyday. It's hard getting going in the am, and I'm swollen at night...but life is MUCH better and I'm feeling more normal. I will continue with PT for 6 more weeks, I'm able to get it 113 degrees at therapy. Good luck to you, did you doctor say anything about possible relaps? Or any other complications in the future?

Aug 16, 2009
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I had a Staph infection too
by: Lincoln Peh

I just read your story.

I too had a staph infection while recovering from ACL surgery. I was a little luckier, I bugged my doctor persistently and he performed the "emergency operation" on the 14th day.

Since then, I was hospitalised for 10 days in the hospital and I was just discharged yesterday with 1 months worth of oral antibiotics.

I was just wondering how well you are recovering from this now?

Thks.

Chun Peh
Melbourne, Australia.


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