Five Days Post-Op.
I realize not everyone wants to see my stitches (actually the steri-strips cover the stitches, but there’s plenty to see), so you can click here to see the damage from a patella tendon ACL reconstruction. You don’t have to look. My goal is to provide a realistic portrayal of recovery, so the pic is there if you need it.
In other ACL news, my last few days have been a strict schedule of rest, exercise and quality time spent in my CPM machine. I see my surgeon next Thursday and I want him to remove my stitches and allow me to start physical therapy then. That said, my main focus is to get the swelling, which is pretty prominent, to go down. Here’s what I’m doing each day to get me closer to those goals.
-I spent four hours in the CPM machine. (1hr. in the morning, 2hrs. in the afternoon and 1hr. before bed)
-After each CPM session, I go for a walk with my crutches, utilizing the “touchdown method.”
-I exercise after each walk. Here are the Week 1 post-op exercises as recommended by the Northwestern Orthopaedic Institute: Knee Extensions (straight), Knee Extensions (prone leg hangs), Sitting Knee Flexion/Extension, Isometric Hamstring & Quadricep Contractions, Co-Contractions w/Hams & Quads, Ankle Pumps, Straight Leg Raises and Range of Motion (bend & stretch as far as you can). This is just a list. I plan to expand upon each in future posts.
I can tell you from my own experience that there is a lot to get used to after surgery, even the simple things like, how to get out of the bed, If you need to get surgery, just make sure you take at least a week off work to really focus on you reducing swelling, getting back on your feet and re-learning how to move around your home.