Sidenote: Potential gross pictures in this post of dressings and external incisions – please do not view if you are known to be a little queasy
I am now 2 weeks post ACL surgery!!
Finally, I have reached one of the milestones they tell you about after having this surgery. Not entirely sure why, because nothing has really changed. Maybe, its a ‘well done you’ve reached two weeks of being able to sit and not have a complete mental breakdown woooo!’
My first statement is not completely true, things have changed. I got my gross dressings removed on day 10 which revealed my pretty neat incisions, and a load of bobbly internal stitches that are actually a bit freaky. They tell me they are meant to dissolve in time- I am not so sure.
(10 days post op-Operated knee, before dressings were to be taken off)
(10 days post op- immediately after dressings were removed. Look at all that swelling!)
I am continuing with my exercises that they have given me, although I still cannot reach full extension. This is bothering me slightly because I know I won’t be able to attempt to walk until I get that full extension. I am trying my best, but the swelling is too much and my muscle loss and control in my quads is pretty dire. Another thing they won’t tell you is how much muscle you lose. I estimate to have lost at least half of my quads, and hamstring, and maybe about a quarter of my calf. One thing I am proud of is how toned my legs usually are. That will be the first thing I work on once I can get rid of those crutches.
I am still bed bound, 14 days later, having to use my splint and my crutches to get up and about. Today was the first day I spent all on my own as my parents went back to work after the Christmas break. Another thing they won’t tell you is that not only will you lose the use of your leg, you will also lose the use of your hands. Whilst I can now stand and walk using my crutches, I can do nothing else. I can’t hold onto anything, not my phone or a glass of water. Making myself lunch for the first time today on my own proved difficult to say the least. Balancing all my weight on one leg and leaning against the counter soon does wear you out, and you just wish it could be easier.
My operated leg is fairly bruised along the shin bone and I have a distinct patch of numbness running down the lateral side of my leg. I have read that the feeling may come back, or it may not. It doesn’t particularly bother me at the moment- its just freaky to not be able to feel part of your leg. The incisions seem to be okay though, no change there. I expect severe scarring where they took the graft. I am also experiencing anterior knee pain when I isolate my quads for exercise- not really sure whats going on there, maybe that will sort itself out.
(14 days post op)
I next see my consultant in just over a week now, when I will be 23 days post op. I am hoping I will see a significant improvement by then, but I am not counting on it. I should be going back to University this weekend for the second semester of my final year- but i’m not, and I’m gutted. I’ll be missing at least a week of uni, maybe more. We shall see.
My main goal for now is just to get the swelling down as much as possible and try to get full leg extension.