by Mika

Meniscus repair scar

Meniscus repair scar

My name is Mika I am 16 years old and I LOVE to play soccer. We all have that one thing that makes us happiest in life and mine is soccer. When I'm out there on the field I feel like I am where I belong. Playing soccer is what I do best. The first time I tore my ACL was when I was 12 years old (young I know). It was an indoor game and I jumped up to get a ball and landed with my leg straight ouch. It hurt but it wasn't like the worst pain you could ever feel. I limped off of the field and sat on the bench the rest of the game. I had ODP olympic developmental program the next day and I felt okay so we got a huge knee brace that I wore during the training. But, I piveted quickly and my knee gave out. The trainer looked at my knee and said it was fine and I could play in a week...sure. So I waited a week and went to practice I just basically limped around the field until my coach yelled at me. We finally went to the doctors after that, I had to have a pediatric surgery which involved a graft. A couple months later I was 14 and playing soccer for the Midwest Regional League in Illinois. I was about to be on a break away after getting by the last defender (she didn't like that very much). So, I was running and she stuck her leg in between mine and kicked me. My left leg stayed planted and it twisted CRACK! owch. Great I thought wonderful JUST WHAT I FREAKIN NEED! Of course the trainer said I was okay again. But, I knew I wasn't so I got some crutches and stayed off of it.Sure enougth it was torn. I got surgery but my growth plates still weren't closed so I had a cadaver which actually an ichelles tendon was used (I have no idea how to spell that). The first 2 tears were both on my left knee, but my third was on my right.

#3: It was the beginning of summer, the same day Michael Jackson died, June 25th. I happened to be at the University of Virginia for a soccer camp. I
was interested in this school and was very excited. It was the second night of camp at the evening scrimages. I was put in the 2nd best group and really wanted to be placed in the first. I was ready to prove myself to everyone. I went out there and was playing great, I was making great crosses and hit the post. And I had just made a great tackle on defense, when the ball went out. It was there throw they threw it in near me and I jumped up in the air. Another girl jumped up with me and the ball kind of got caught on my left thigh while my right leg was still planted. I twisted funny and heard crack..crack..crack. I screamed in pain and anger NO NO NO NO NO!!!! NOT AGAIN NOT AGAIN!! I was going crazy like a lunatic. All these girls didn't know my previous history and probably thought that I was some kind of lunatic. The trainer calmed me down and told me my ACL felt fine yea RIGHT! Yea don't ever TRUST a trainer. I was depressed because I didn't believe him. I cried alot. I feel like crying typing this. I still remember all of this so clearly. I came back from camp and went to the doctors. Yup it's torn. But atleast now I can have the adult operation which involved the patelar tendon.I also tore both of my meniscus'. And for all of you athletes out there DO NOT USE A HAMSTRING GRAFT this compromises your speed and stability. So, here I am now 6 weeks out of surgery. I can do a rotation on the bike kind of, bend to 90 degrees and walk without my crutches (secretly ;) I really want to share my story so that people will actually do things to prevent ACL tears from happening, if you have a daughter or anyone you know who is a female athlete please please please warn them. I would say the end but it's not the end. Another thing to remember ACL tears are not the end of the world. There the start of a new journey, they add something interesting to your personal story. If you are going through this now like me! I recomend visiting and remember KEEP YOUR HEAD UP :D

Return to ACL Surgery Stories.