How was your ACL recovery?

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4/18/2019 2:45 AM

Tore my ACL riding about 6 weeks ago and actually fractured my foot as well. I'm in a boot right now and the doctor wants to go ahead and to the surgery using the hamstring method. I'm in a peculiar situation to where I can either have the surgery in a few weeks and have about 3 weeks before I need to travel via flight, or that I can wait to have the surgery but the wait will be 2-3 months. Also if I have the surgery now I'll be pretty much on my own during the beginning of the recovery versus waiting and having the luxury of family to help me out afterward. I've had shoulder surgery (labrum repair) and didn't feel like I needed much help from anyone around me, but I know every surgery is different. So.... how was your recovery time? How soon were you walking and how much could you walk? Did you feel like you needed to have someone around at all times to help you out with daily tasks?

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4/18/2019 5:04 AM

Didn't need someone to help me with daily tasks but I was at my parents so they did a heap of stuff for me. Biggest hurdle would be making meals (which I struggle with even when I have no injuries).

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4/18/2019 5:29 AM

My only advice is do the physio exercise/stretches etc
I got lazy with mine towards the end and didn’t get full flexibility back for a while.. after it healed it took a loooong time of stretching to get my full range of motion back

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4/18/2019 5:44 AM

It is a needy surgery, recovery wise. As said above, you need to take the recovery serious. I don’t remember specific dates. But I was in the CPM (constant passive movement) machine like 6 hours a day after surgery. The thing keeps the joint moving for you. Mine could take weight rather quickly, just couldn’t bend. I want to say I got full range of pedaling a bike at 14 days. Slowly and ugly but I got it. Therapy, stretching, and pain tolerance during those two. I was riding at 5 months 1 day. I’m just past a year and I’m pretty normal. I feel it. But it does what it’s told. I run, squat, moto, and I guess I can’t conplain. I had the patella graph option, of my own. So in a sense, they created an injury to heal an injury. I understand it’s a longer healing process, but stronger. I believe the hammy is a fine option too. Just comes down to your strength before and doctors preference. You’re gonna want tinhave a free schedule to sit in the CPM and go to therapy and nothing else for a while. I’m of the ilk to want surgery now and start down the road to recovery. Can’t imagine waiting weeks or more to even get the knife. Good luck

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4/18/2019 5:45 AM

Who needs an ACL?

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4/18/2019 6:33 AM

No need to wait.....the longer you wait the longer the recovery. You're causing atrophy and stress as other ligaments and muscles react to your ACL tear. Your first 2-3 days will be the roughest, but as long as you are comfortable with getting around on crutches, you'll be fine. Make sure you get therapy going as soon as possible and as much as possible. In addition to use of a CPM, get yourself a cold therapy unit: https://www.breg.com/products/cold-therapy/devices/kodiak-cold-therapy/
You'll get more use out of it after your knee recovers for other injuries.

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4/18/2019 7:09 AM
Edited Date/Time: 4/18/2019 7:11 AM

I would wait. Get your knee ready for surgery by having full range of motion and minimal swelling. I've had both knees done and recovery after surgery was not increased by waiting; exact opposite. My left knee I waited 4 months and strengthened the knee before surgery. Getting the swelling down and range of motion back before surgery is a lot easier than after. My wife's a physical therapist and helped with recovery. Find a physical therapist now and have appointments scheduled for after surgery.

Also, you do not want to be in a boot after your ACL surgery. This will hinder your gait and make it harder walking with the new ACL. My other ligaments were not affected by waiting. I wore a brace while riding and exercising.

Another thing, diet plays a huge role in recovery. If you're traveling it's a lot harder to eat healthy.

Good luck with recovery and listen to your PT!

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4/18/2019 7:18 AM

This one is a no brainer especially since you are recovering from two injuries. Get The surgery ASAP.

Prolonging will lengthen your recovery and make it more difficult to regain range of motion.

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4/18/2019 7:29 AM

I waited 2 years to have my acl surgery and had no issues with recovery. I was lucky enough to have my parents to help me at home and drive me to and from physical therapy. The physical therapy part was a breeze for me and was expecting much worse.

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4/18/2019 8:20 AM

My son had his done with the hamstring because he was about 6 months too young for the cadaver replacement. It's been 8 years since & he still feels pain in the hamstring donor location every day. He always says that he should have waited the 6 months, but we had no way of knowing this would happen.

His original recovery was pretty quick, but most things are at 17..

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4/18/2019 8:47 AM

Tore mine way back in 89. Never had surgery because they didn't have a very good reputation at the time. Looked into it a few years back, and would definitely go the cadaver donor if possible. No reason add an additional trauma site to your body. I ride, and do other physical activities above a workout level, with a CTi custom fit brace. Has been working great so far, but at 45, I'm waiting for the wear and tear to catch up to me. I strongly recommend getting it done sooner rather than later.

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4/18/2019 9:45 AM

Did my surgery in 87, Patella Graph by the University of Arizona Team Orthopedic Surgeon at the time. Been great since!

Technology has changed so much now.... recovery times do not compare.

11 months for me back then to start riding again, wanted to be sure all was 100% and ready to go before I raced again.

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Arkmx.
Jim G.

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4/18/2019 9:46 AM

newmann wrote:

Who needs an ACL?

Photo

That's not right ...! LOL. w00t shocked wassat

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Arkmx.
Jim G.

Thank you to our Sponsors!
Lucas Oil, MavTV, Engine Ice, Factory Connection, Pro Clean, FLY, FMF, EVS, Oakley, Flow Vision, Ryno Power, Gaerne, Stickman Grapix, MotoHose, Raines Racing, Motosport.com, Ride 365, The PIT Enterprise, JTG Racing.

4/18/2019 11:27 AM

I had an acl with hamstring graft in 1999. Skip to 2018 and had a revision due to the graft stretched out and doing nothing. It was terrible the second time. Fevers, swelling, etc. had to go back in for a rescope washout and debridement to figure out what was going on. Spent a week in hospital antibiotics etc. Several cultures came back negative for bacteria growth. Negative for RA. They think it was some kind of reactive arthritis. I’m back lifting weights and exercising but it still swollen and warm to touch.

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4/18/2019 11:35 AM

I had my ACL replaced with a patellar graft. My experience was pretty terrible, I had more trouble rehabing the patellar tendon than the knee itself. If I had to do it again, I would do the hamstring, though there are plenty of complications with that graft as well.

With regard to recovery, It took more than a year to have no pain. I pushed it too hard early on (3-4 months out, running and training) and set myself back by inflaming the graft site. I was basically back to square one.

I would recommend getting it done sooner rather than later and be very cautious with your recovery. I thought I was "ahead of schedule" and the "doctors were amazed by my recovery". In reality, we all heal about the same pace. Set aside a full 6 months to get fat and out of shape on the couch, then start fresh after that with a good, strong joint.

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4/18/2019 12:45 PM

I had mine done in 2010 when I was 40, with a cadaver tendon. Had a great Dr., he did a bunch of the Colorado Avalanche and Rockies players. I was full weight bearing day 2 which was weird but he said to walk as soon as possible and start exercises right away. He did not recommend the constant motion machine because he wanted me to do it myself.

I had it done on a Thursday and was back to work Monday. The first couple of weeks were uncomfortable due to swelling as the day went on but pretty quickly I was mostly normal with very little pain. I did do the rehab at a facility, which I highly recommend because they will push you to do things you wouldn't want to do as early on such as running and pivoting.

I went with out an ACL for about 10 years so once it was done, I have been super happy with the result. If you are going to do it, the cadaver tendon will allow quicker normal function but the same overall recovery time. So, if you need to go to work, I would recommend the cadaver in a heart beat.

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4/18/2019 8:02 PM

Thanks guys for the input. My doctor recommended the hamstring because its just what he has the most experience with but it looks like I'm gonna wait it out for a bit so that I'm not pushing the recovery too soon by travelling. Not to mention that I'm gonna miss some crucial PT while i'm travelling.

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4/18/2019 10:58 PM

I had a patellar graft for mine as well. Before surgery I rehabbed my knee pretty good and I toyed off post surgery. It took a few months to get walking normal again and some time in rehab to get strength fully back. Definitely work on getting your range of motion back as others have said. That is crucial for recovery. My surgery was 7 years ago this Saturday actually. Knee feels great and I don’t have issues anymore. I wish you well in your recovery.

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4/19/2019 6:40 AM

I waited nearly 10years! Yes 10! But I wasn’t into making sharp cuts by planting my leg etc anymore. There were times where it hurt but nothing too crazy. It didn’t hold me back from to many activities I wanted to do. Espically riding dirt bike. I just used be heavier brace on my knee that was given in college. by the time I said ok, my MCL was shot and needed to clean up some cartilage from the wear. Was like walking on a stilt. What made the wait time possible, weight training. Hamstring and quad strength. Also I’m not one to jump in front of the line to go to the doctor. Lucky we have one of if not the best knee surgeons in he country local in Dr Andrews. They advised me leading up to surgery continue to lift/workout like regularly. Will help with PT.

But the first 2-3week after surgery......... was extremely extremely rough. Questioned my decision. After that your gains will increase rapidly, of coarse that’s if you listen to the doctors. My PT group pushed you every single day. Wouldn’t mind calling you out either. They helped a ton! Was even released ahead of schedule. But very time consuming. Good Luck.

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4/19/2019 8:32 AM

I had a ACL/PCL/ meniscus repair 3 weeks ago. I haven’t had a ACL/ PCL for about 15-18 years. I just turned 40. The ACL/PCL never caused me issues for all those years of active lifestyle, however in September I popped my meniscus, that was the last thing holding it together, never really hurt but knee “popped out” 4 times before I got a MRI. Doctor told me I had 20mm deflection, I had cadaver acl/PCL and was putting weight on it at 5 days. I haven’t used crutches for 5 days now. I am still in a rigid brace for another week or so. I have had zero pain post surgery however. Doctor told me 7-9 months I should be 100% to do anything again. If I had just ACL recovery would be easier and faster, but PCL really fubared me. I wouldn’t hesitate to do it again.

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4/19/2019 9:22 PM

Ruptured my ACL in 97 and had the hamstring graft. Took me about 7 months to get back to normal. Do not slack on your physical therapy or you are just going to extend the process.

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2020 KTM 350 SXF

4/20/2019 3:46 AM

I got the hamstring graft to fix my acl in 2013, rehab wasn't that bad, and I was back riding five months later.

I've recently torn it again, along with some serious damage to the meniscus, and I'm looking at getting a meniscus transplant and an acl replacement during the next couple of months. That's going to take a lot of time to heal and rehab before I'm back riding and racing.

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4/20/2019 4:33 AM

I’m having my 3rd done in July! I fell and slammed my leg at the track and it ended up breaking my Patellar tendon graft right off the femur, the screws are loose. So there gonna make a new graft from that area of skin right above the knee then I’m getting a cadaver meniscus since mines gone I’m only 22 but I’ll have this to stare at makes it all worth it Photo

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4/20/2019 1:29 PM

lisenbyjacob wrote:

Tore my ACL riding about 6 weeks ago and actually fractured my foot as well. I'm in a boot right now and the doctor wants to ...more

The numbers are better for Patella graft. Theoretically, the hamstring bundle is stronger, but the actual results of the surgery are best for Patella.

One thing to understand is that Docs generally gravitate to a certain procedure. If they are all about the money, then they will do cadaver grafts. Why? Because the procedure takes less time, and the can do more of them on their "cut day". More cutting more money.... If they doc is a Patella autograft guy...he will generally do just that.

Whatever the docs procedure is...he is going to try and convince you that is the best procedure for you. Which is total BS. My recommendation is determine on your own what the best procedure is...then find a good doc who primarily does that procedure.

For Moto / Offroad riding, my conclusion is that Patella is the only way to do...and the best surgeon in the nation for that procedure is Don Shelbourne out of Indy (he used to be the team doc for the Colts, and has done something like 8,000 ACL procedures using Patella grafts.....)

Do not just blindly trust your docs. You are smart. Read the papers yourself. Start with this one:
GRAFT SELECTION IN ANTERIOR CRUCIATE LIGAMENT
RECONSTRUCTION
1Nathan A. Mall, MD
1,3Geoffrey S. Van Thiel, MD, MBA
2Asheesh Bedi, MD
1Brian J. Cole, MD, MBA
1Rush University Medical Center, Department of Orthopaedics, Division of Sports Medicine
2 University of Michigan, Department of Orthopaedics, MedSport
3 Rockford Orthopedic Associates, Rockford, IL

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4/20/2019 1:35 PM

Autismmx110 wrote:

I’m having my 3rd done in July! I fell and slammed my leg at the track and it ended up breaking my Patellar tendon graft right ...more

I'm having the cadaver meniscus too. What did they tell you in regards to recovery time and riding again?

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4/20/2019 1:48 PM
Edited Date/Time: 4/20/2019 2:06 PM

lisenbyjacob wrote:

Thanks guys for the input. My doctor recommended the hamstring because its just what he has the most experience with but it ...more

Sounds like you have an honest Doc. Many Docs will not acknowledge that they recommend the procedure they personally specialize in. For a MX / Offroad rider, you have two choices for the ACL repair....Patella or Hamstring. Nothing else should be considered. Determine which is right for you, then get a doc who is an expert in what you choose. Most people just pick a doc and do what he says. Not a good idea.

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4/20/2019 4:45 PM

lisenbyjacob wrote:

Tore my ACL riding about 6 weeks ago and actually fractured my foot as well. I'm in a boot right now and the doctor wants to ...more

Bone Patellar bone is the gold standard not hamstring tendon. KT100 testing shows the Bone Patellar bone technique is stronger than the original ACL. A cadaver tendon is not as strong as harvesting your own. The process of sanitizing the donor tendon weakens it. I had mine done in 98. Rehab was a bitch. I got Patellar tendinitis which was extremely difficult to overcome. I still have functional issues 20 years on including the tracking of my patella in the trochear groove. I had a microfracture and cleanup in 2014 which made it feel a lot better.

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3/4/2021 7:42 PM

Anyone on here had a meniscus transplant? If so Howd it go

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