Wednesday, September 24, 2008

Day 162 Of My PCL Surgery And Recovery

My knee looks pretty much the same these days.
I am balancing on my braced leg while catching a weighted ball. It was a lot of fun until my IT band started to ache. The Iliotibial band is a sheath of connective tissue attaching from muscles in the gluteal region to the lateral (outside) surface of the tibia or shin bone. Its purpose is to extend the knee joint (straightening it) as well as abducting the hip (moving it out sideways). It's better explained here. I was instructed to ice and massage the area to help alleviate pain. This is also known as runners knee.

Today is the beginning of week 24. I'm getting anxious to do more but it seems like when I try I get slammed back down. No worries, I won't stay down for long. I can finally start to see an end in sight to this long and painful recovery.

Anyone considering this surgery please beware of the extended time you need to invest in the recovery. I can't say that often enough. Read my blog and be sure to check out the comments. I have lots of people here that have been through or going through recovery. If you have any questions we'll do our best to get answers for you.
Drop me a line and stay tuned for more PCL fun!


Anonymous said...

You're looking good! I had trouble with my IT band, too. It would cramp and hurt, limiting flexion. Fortunately for me, I had a very cute young male PT assistant that massaged it for me. Those were the days! My IT band trouble lasted about a month. Once it relaxed the flexion limitation was cenetered in the quad, right above the kneecap.

Linda said...

It's amazing how interconnected and complex our bodies are. Dan needed a pain pill yesterday not for his knee, but for his foot. Walking without a crutch and exaggerating the foot motion is causing a bit of a rebellion in his foot muscles and tendons. It seems that each step in progress comes with a price . . . .aching foot, IT aches,. . . etc.

We saw his surgeon this morning(9 wks PO). Dan is back in his Breg Fusion brace for public and can go without a brace at home. . . no crutches!!! He's looking forward to his first shower. For the last 9 weeks he has been "jackknifing" his body into the tub.

Skinnygurl, I hope your IT is calming down for you.
Take care,

Anonymous said...


Congrats to Dan! There must be big difference between PCL surgery (like Dan's) and PCL/MCL surgery (like mine), at least as far as bracing goes. I'm still in the Breg Fusion brace and will be until the one year anniversary of my reconstruction. I keep asking my OS to let me out of it earlier, but he keeps smiling back "I SAID ONE YEAR!" Something to do with healing bone tunnels. Oh, well.

Linda said...

Molly & Skinny gurl, do you both wear your Breg Fusion 24 hrs/day? I know each surgeon has their own protocol, and each patient has their own recovery, but that's a pretty big difference. . . I have to say it makes me a bit nervous.

Skinnygurl said...

I'm so glad you found my blog. Man, I would have been so worried about my IT band and now know it's normal. I'm getting better!!! It does ache and sometimes I find myself limping. I'm glad it won't last forever.

Thanks for the well wishes. You're so right. I'm finding that everyone has their own protocol. For me since I wear my brace except when showering, CPM and sleeping. I still use my ice machine a lot and have yet to get through a nights sleep without it. It's very aggrevating and I look forward to the day that I can ditch it. For now I count my blessings being able to continue having it. Talk about a double edge sword!!

I believe I will be required to wear my brace for one whole year post op and then after that during sports that could put my knee in danger. I will post more about that when I see my OS Oct. 14 so be looking for that update! I'm pretty excited about seeing him again, especially with these huge leaps of improvement.

Congratulations Dan!!!

Anonymous said...


Whatever is normal for me may not be normal for anyone else. I'm just reporting what I experienced. So far, our recoveries are very similar, except that yours is faster than mine.


I wear my brace whenever I go out of the house and when doing any load-bearing activity indoors (like cleaning and/or hauling stuff around the house). One other exception: I don't wear it during my indoor cycling class. I expect my OS to let me take it off for good after my one-year followup, but I plan to wear it for a while longer when I'm hiking or cycling outdoors, etc. I really felt like I needed the support up until about one month ago. I find it amazing that Dan doesn't wear his all the time (except for sleeping and showering)at 9 weeks post-op. But you're correct, it seems like every doctor has a different protocol.

momofsprinter said...

Linda - You asked about wearing the brace 24 hours a day.

Skinnygurl (day 141) posted the website to the New England Deaconess PCL Protocol . . . here is the excerpt regarding the brace if JUST the PCL repaired. .

• 4-6 weeks: Brace unlocked for gait in controlled environment only (i.e. patient
may walk with brace unlocked while attending PT or when at home).
• 6-8 weeks: Brace unlocked for all activities.
• 8 weeks: Brace discontinued, as allowed by surgeon.
o Note, if PCL or LCL repair, continue . . . etc.

Dina said...

I really admire the way u r handling it and the way u r discribing it too
actually that is a very hard experience but u r so stubborn getting well .. as u said getting as u were before that happened .
i think u will be more better than before by ur willness and insisting to be better .
for a while i thought i know what u ve been through cause i had a broken leg 2 yrs ago and as i told u it kept me in bed for 2 months .. waiting for someone to bring me water .. but now and after i read what u ve been through i think that what i ve been through is nothing comparing to u .
it is really sad but what make it so cheerful is ur will and ur power to be better
God bless u and help u get well so soon .. all what i want tosay at the end that i admire u so much
keep on the hard work .. u will get what u want .