I am still using the crutches because my quad muscle is on vacation… but its slowly coming back. I was off my feet for two and a half weeks before surgery, so my quad was on its way out and since surgery its really gone. Its pretty sad to look at my left quad and see the muscle definition, and then see my other fat thigh with no muscle in sight. I am able to actually flex it a little bit now though whereas before I couldn’t even hold a muscle contraction.
I have been doing the rehab exercises they gave me and its slowly coming along. They gave me 4 exercises to do…
1. Extend my leg and try to make it straight. Hooking a towel on my toes and pulling until I feel a stretch in my knee. I keep doing this one all day long trying to keep my leg straight, which I am told can be the toughest part. This one hurts a little bit but its bearable.
2. Bending my leg by hooking that towel on my heel and pulling it in until I feel a slight stretch. This one is pretty weird because I feel pressure underneath my kneecap which is pretty weird. This one doesnt hurt at all, but its weird when I go from bent to straight because the motion is jerky.
3. Keeping my leg straight and contracting my quad muscles and pushing my heel into the ground. This one hurts a little but I have been doing it nonstop all day as I lay in bed. I think its helping me the most of all my rehab exercises.
4. I lay flat on my back with my leg straight and lift my leg about 10 inches off the ground. This is the toughest exercise to do and leaves me feeling pretty nauseous. The paper says I should be doing 20 of these but I can only do about 5 or 6 right now. For the first couple days I couldn’t do any of them. I think part of the problem is again: no quad.
The doctor told me I could get me on my feet and walking with the brace locked out at 0 degrees so there is no bending. I can’t really walk that much because I can’t bring myself to let go of counters or crutches. My body just does not want to let go and is trying to protect itself. I did go to the gym last night though and I got into the boxing ring and was walking around the inside while holding onto the ropes. In the beginning I was bracing myself on the ropes but as I got going I was lifting the ropes and not bearing any weight on them. This was my way of tricking my body and forcing it to walk. I walked around the ring 2 or 3 times but was hurting pretty good afterwards. I was happy that I was able to walk though, so its a start. We were going to go out to get something to eat after everyone was done training but I just went home early to ice my knee.
I go back to the doctor for a followup tomorrow so hopefully I will have a more complete rehab schedule by then. I want to push my knee but until I talk with the doctor I don’t want to try and do too much and re-injure myself.