Second ACL Injury from Soccer

by Jael

I am a sixteen-year-old junior in high school. Last year in September I completely tore my left ACL and had some meniscus damage playing soccer in a Labor Day pre–season varsity soccer tournament. I had to miss the rest of the season, did pre-op physical therapy and I had surgery in October last year. I rehabbed for about 4 months afterward. I got cleared at 4 months and started playing at 6 months on a club team. I was getting back into it and was getting my game back. I was playing in a Memorial day tournament. I rocked the first half and was just starting the second half. I was kicking a ball with my right foot and I brought my foot back down really quickly. I don’t remember how exactly I fell but I ended up on the ground and it hurt. I am told that I landed with my knee out. So my coach and a EMT came out. I lied there just calmed myself down. I was thinking “oh no not again”. They pulled me up and I told them I could walk by myself. So I walked off the field. My knee did not feel unstable and it felt completely different then last time. It hurt more on the outside. I sat out the rest of that game and my friend texted our High School trainer. He eventually came out. I explained what happened and he did a bunch of tests on it. They all hurt just on the outside. He gave me ice and said that he thought it was a lateral ligament sprain. He told me that I should see my physical therapist. So I sat out the rest of the tournament and saw him the next Tuesday. I told him what happened and he did a bunch of the same tests. He though it was a lateral collateral ligament sprain. He said to take our next game off and practice and then come back to see him. I did and he said that I could practice with a brace. I did and it felt good. Then next practice felt good too. When I went to see him a few days before our game to see if I could play he asked me if I thought I could. I told him that I was not sure so he said I should not. So the Club season ended and I started conditioning with the brace and checked in with my physical therapist. I did that through the summer. They started to think it was more of a meniscus injury. Then in July I was supposed to go to a soccer camp. He said to go to the camp with no restrictions but to stop if it hurt at all and to bring their number just in case. So I went to camp and was doing pretty good, only a few little pains. On the second day I was playing the evening game and I was chasing a ball on defense. I was running down the line toward our goal to turn it and when I did, I pivoted hard of my right leg. I felt a pop and it HURT so I quickly sat down. I laid back and was trying to calm my self down. My coaches came out and I told them not to touch me and to let me calm myself down. I rolled on my stomach and was about to get up and my coach said to just relax and take it easy. Eventually I scooted off the field and the trainer came over. My coach

said she heard a pop too and that the other coach said that she had heard a pop. The trainer examined it and said it looked like more meniscus. She asked about my previous injury. I iced and she looked at it again. She said to come see her tomorrow. I tried calling my therapist but could not get through that night. So my coach called in the morning to get there original prognosis of what it was. They said lateral meniscus. I saw the trainer and told her. She said she thought it was medial meniscus this time but that did not explain the pop. She said to see a Dr. when I got back. She said I could play that day but that she did not recommend it! SO I watched.

When I got back I saw my therapist and he said that I should see a DR. So I scheduled an appointment about a week later. When I saw him, he messed around with my knee moving it different ways. He said that because my legs were so strong he could not do the regular tests that he usually did, so he did some special ones, but he still was not sure. I got an x-ray, which didn’t show anything. So he said that he wanted me to get an MRI. I did the following day, Tuesday, (my birthday) and scheduled an appointment for the following Monday. I filled out this paper that my therapist gave me so that they would get the results too. Since soccer started on Monday we asked if they could call us with the results. SO I had my MRI and then the next day they called and told me that I had torn my other ACL and some meniscus. They said I could come in the next day to talk. After my mom hung up with my Dr, my therapist called. He asked if we heard what happened and she told him yes. They talked a bit. She told him that I still wanted to play. He said it was possible but that I would risk further meniscus injury, but I did not want to miss another season. The next day I saw my Dr. and he told me my options. I could do nothing about it, get surgery or play with a brace. I told him that I was not quite ready for surgery again. We told him that we would get back to him. After my parents and I talked about it they decided that they would be ok with me playing. Since I still wanted to get it fixed eventually I think I will have surgery some time in January then I will still have enough time to be ready for my Senior year! So we scheduled an appointment with an orthopedic place. Practices started and since I was not re-cleared I could not do anything yet. I was a little worried about not practicing because we have cuts and I was not able to do anything. Then Wednesday I went and got fitted for my brace. They said it would take a few days but it’s been a week and one day and its still not here yet. We called and they said it could be here today so hopefully! Anyway three days ago were the cuts and I still made the team. My coach said that he knew I was a good player and that I could begin when I got my brace.
So I am just waiting, and watching our 4½ hour practices and 2 a days till I can play.

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