Week 5! Only 3 more weeks till I am out of the red and can start progressing a little quicker! Below is a summary of my PT exercises, some accomplishments, how I am feeling and a few questions I asked my surgeon (I learned some pretty cool stuff from him this past appointment!).
- Have almost complete full ROM (at 138 degrees @ week 5 (even more so today) – I was at 136 last week, but my PT said that is great. If my knee were to get full ROM too quickly, it would most likely be a sign that something bad happened)
- Am walking on the treadmill at about 3-4 speed for 10 + minutes at a time + going on the bike for 30-45 minutes at a time… it is amazing how loose and great my knee feels after doing cardio.
- Experiencing pain in the back of my knee/hamstring/calf area – I asked my PT about it, and she said it was just my hamstring. I noticed the pain one night after a long day of moving around/hitting my PT exercises pretty hard… especially when extending my leg. It is freaking me out a little bit, so I am backing off on my exercises for a few days. On the plus side, my hamstring is sore! This makes me so happy because it means I am working and strengthening it.
- Still using my oils, maybe not as much as before – since most of my swelling has disappeared, I am focusing on the scarring – myrrh, frankincense, Helichrysum, lavender. I also put lemongrass on the sore muscles like my hamstring & behind my knee for my new ligament. And cypress, for circulation to try and get the feeling back on the left side of my leg. Also – a sports oil blend 2x-3 a day, to help with swelling and healing.
- Still taking same supplements (noted in previous posts)
Extra Exercises in addition to physical therapy:
- Crunches on ball – 3 sets of 50
- Arm curls with 10 lb weights – 3 sets of 10
- Side crunches with 6 lb ball – 3 sets of 75
- Shoulder press machine
- Arm press machine
- Crunch-ups with straight arms holding a 6 lb ball – 3 sets of 15
- Hanging leg lifts (pike position) – 2-3 sets of 20
- Back extensions on stability ball w/arms straight by ears – 3 sets of 15-20 (I put my feet against the wall for more stability)
- STRETCH! after every workout 🙂
Questions I asked my surgeon:
- What kind of screw was used? Does it need to be removed? – Screw that is basically made out of something similar to bone (calcium – something) + 1 small titanium piece of hardware. The screw will partially dissolve/my bone will absorb it, and the small piece of hardware will always be there.
- How much of my graft was hamstring/cadaver? – About 50/50 (the cadaver was also a hamstring)
- Are the cadavers radiated? (My boyfriend said he heard they were radiated back in the 70’s) -No, they do not do that anymore, those cadavers had a very high fail rate
- I didn’t ask this question, but my surgeon added on something pretty cool: When he worked in Canada, studies were done on the newly repaired ACL’s – apparently there used to be about a 6 month wait to get an ACL surgery done, so people that agreed to participate in studies could jump to the front of the line to get the surgery done sooner. The studies had people come back in after their surgery for a second minor invasive surgery, and took a small part of their new ACL to view it under a microscope. What the studies found was that after about 12-18 months, the hamstring/cadaver grafts literally turned into a new ACL! – an actual ligament. Pretty cool!
- When can I do Yoga? (I actually asked my PT this, but I wanted to also see what my surgeon said) Basic yoga now, then back to normal, slowly, at the 2-3 month mark. I am starting back up at Bikram yoga this week, I cannot wait!
- My knee cap pops out when I am on the bike – why? (it is extremely uncomfortable, and you can’t exactly stop biking immediately when it happens) Swelling – my surgeon told me to take my anti-inflammatory drugs + continue to strengthen my legs. The more strong my legs are, the more I will progress quicker!
Overall, super excited and happy with my progress. The past 5 weeks have gone by so fast! I really don’t know why I was ever worried – the first week was the hardest, but after that, things get a lot easier.