Is it solely an ACL tear? Any other ligament involvement? Any meniscal damage? Are you getting a patellar graft, hamstring graft, or cadaver graft done? Depending on which graft is performed (and assuming it is only an ACL tear) will determine your return to participation (RTP) timing.
Hamstring graft generally means no hamstring strengthening for 3 month post-op. Patellar graft will limit quad activities for a little bit and usually leads to patellar tendonitis issues down the road.
Both hamstring and patellar grafts are generally 6 months post-op until the physician will clear you for full RTP, but this number can sway depending on your recovery rate and how you are progressing through rehab. Cadaver grafts are usually 1 year until RTP and there is always the chance of the body rejecting the graft.
Best advice I have for you is to follow your therapist’s/physician’s advice and to make sure to regain full ROM, especially into knee extension. If you don’t gain full knee extension back, there is a chance of a “Cyclops Lesion/Cyst” forming, which is basically a ball of scar tissue that forms in the back of the knee and will permanently limit knee extension.
Also, at about 1-2 months post-op, you will begin to feel like a million bucks and think you are ready to go out and play in athletic competition and test your knee out. DO NOT TEST IT OUT. The strength of the graft in your knee will fluctuate and at that point in time, even though you feel great, the graft is most vulnerable to re-tearing.
It is a slow recovery so don’t rush through it, but don’t feel like you cannot do anything at all. You have 3 perfectly healthy limbs to train with, so enjoy a lot of upper extremity work and single leg lower extremity work.
Best of luck.
sorry for the long delay, finals week…
yes, its a sole ACL tear in my left leg, no other damages. I’m currently set on get a graft from a cadaver because the idea of losing/exchanging something else from my body is not too appealing. however, in reality i’m not grounded in my choice either… they all have negative aspects. thanks for the response. i’m gonna try really hard to muster out the patience to let my leg fully heal.
[quote] Matt wrote:
I also had my ACL reconstructed about 7 months ago. You absolutely can still bench, Kara Bohigian set a WR while rehabbing hers. This is me 4 days after mine, http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3CCk4hf2fv0 . You can do everything upper body fine, just sit down. I did lots of 1-legged leg press, leg extensions and curls till I was cleared to start squatting again. I think it was around 4 weeks.
Just take your time and take it easy.[/quote]
is it difficult to pull your torn leg back further? i usually pull mine way back near where my shoulder region is. it seems like you’re arching fine though. i was attempting to bench with a cast on the other day and i kept slipping (haven’t gotten surgery yet, just experimenting). are you just getting a bench workout in or are you going somewhat heavy? have you tried maxing out on the bench, or attempted dumbbell bench since the surgery? thanks.