Allison's post ACL surgury complications

by Allison
(Plantation, FL)

I'm a 44 year old female firefighter and athlete. I tore my right ACL completely om March 28, 09. I had reconstructive surgery using my patellar tendon on April 14th. The doctor also did minor repairs on my meniscus. Presently, I'm 9 weeks post-surgery. I do physical therapy for 3 hours three times per week (plus more on my own). I am having numerous problems with my knee and I'm very frustrated.

I have a large lump at the point where my patellar tendon attaches to my tibia. My patella has very limited movement. I don't know if this is because of the lump or if I'm having possible scar tissue issues. My knee gets really irritated and swells after my aggressive therapy sessions. Various muscles in my thigh are extremely tight- I stretch them using a foam roller several times a day for relief. I have not slept through the night since my injury day. Most nights I need Vicadin but that really doesn't help. I sleep for a couple of hours then knee pain wakes me up and I toss and turn the rest of the night.

Because of all these problems, my therapist and I have decided to take a break from squat and extension type exercises to see if we can get the swelling and "lump" to come down. We've just done massage, ultrasound, stretching, and cycling for the past week. The swelling has gone down but everything else is the same. The painful nights are killing me plus I want to get back to work and resume biking and running. I'm exhausted and frustrated, please help.

Have you ever seen a lump like I've described? I see my doctor again in 4 days. Do you have any suggestions? By the way, I'm a few degrees short of full extension and I get about 140 degrees flexion with help from the therapists (much less if I have a lot of swelling). Thank you.

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