Wednesday, March 19, 2008

Month 10 - ACL Update

It has been ten months since my surgery. I thought it was time for an update/recap. I was back in the dojo (limited - no kicks, sparring etc.) since month three and training again since month seven. After month six, I had no restrictions.

The hardest part of my ACL recovery:
1. Not being able to drive for 6 weeks after surgery (I had surgery on my right knee)
2. Limited wardrobe - I was in sweatpants and shorts until the post-operative brace came off
3. Using crutches
4. Navigating stairs
5. Attended my daughters First Communion on crutches and in a brace.
6. Limited summer activities 2007
7. The first straight leg - leg lift. This was practically impossible for me.
8. Sleeping with the post-operative brace - UGH
9. The time and patience required for recovery
10. NO Karate

Milestones of my ACL recovery:
1. The first straight leg - leg lift (3 days)
2. Removal of the post-operative brace (5 weeks)
3. Gaining back full ROM (12 weeks)
4. The functional brace fitting (14 weeks)
5. Walking up and down stairs "normally" (6 months)
6. Being able to stand up from a one leg kneeling position (8 months)
7. Jogging, skipping, jumping (4 -6 months)
8. Kicking (6 months), sparring (7 months), pivoting (6 months)
9. Use of the soft ACL brace (9 months)
10. Karate at the Honbu (8 months)

What I have learned about myself:
1. A positive attitude will get you through anything
2. I think I have a high pain tolerance
3. I try to be grateful everyday for what I am able to do
4. I have a renewed appreciation of karate and what it means to me
5. I like to spar - I did not before the ACL surgery
6. I surprised myself by starting this blog

I remember sitting in the doctors office and scheduling my surgery. It seems so long ago...

These are my personal experiences and reflections on ACL surgery.
03.21.08 I have updated my milestones with approximate timeline.


Jed said...


I was just wondering what the timeline was for each of your milestones.

Michele said...

Hi Jed,

I have updated my post to include an approximate timeline on my ACl milestones. Good idea!

I was given a strict "no kicking" rule for 6 months. I headed back to the dojo after 3 months but with very limited footwork.


Nonblond said...

I am a 37 year old female who tore her ACL on her annual ski trip (my ski didn't come off when I wiped out) last month. I just had my surgery last Tuesday and I am so glad I found your blog! I plan to read about your experiences and frustrations so that I can prepare for what is to come. I wouldn't wish this injury/surgery on my worst enemy...