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ACL Tear

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  • ACL Tear

    Speak to me of ACL tears and surgery and riding. I injured my knee skiing last February, went to orthopedic doctor, injected, did PT and then at a horse show at the beginning of the month I was running my mare in the in hand class and felt something pop. Back to the orthopedic doctor, got an MRI and got the results today: ACL tear. I meet again on Monday to see what to do next. Thank goodness show season is over for me already. Any advice? Comfort words?
    RIP Mydan Mydandy+
    RIP Barichello

  • #2
    A lot of riders don’t have functional ACL ligaments and do well without them. You may want the ACL replaced if you plan to ski regularly, run competitively, or do other sports that require a functional ACL. I would talk with the orthopedist and at least one PT to get an idea of the pro’s and cons of ACL replacement.

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    • #3
      I say if you know definitively it's a tear, do the surgery now rather than later.

      I had an ACL rupture in January - didn't get surgery until April.. which in hindsight I regret because I lost *another* season of showing. I was back on my horse (which horrified my surgeon) July 1st, but he is a quiet guy, and I was very conservative/careful. Back on the ice now, but playing VERY conservatively.. Doctors said 8-9 months to return to sport, your mileage (like mine) may vary. It still hurts if I push my limits, but not the way it hurt before surgery.

      Here is my thread if you'd like some first hand experience:
      https://www.chronofhorse.com/forum/f...ad-the-surgery

      The surgery was a cakewalk. Layup wasn't pretty. Glad I did it though, and looking forward to being back on the top of my game in the spring.

      It sounds like you are active, like me -- so the surgery might be better sooner rather than later.. I thought maybe it could heal on its own (which is why I didn't get surgery until April) after hearing the above, but it didn't heal at all, and got worse. I had a hamstring graft.


      AETERNUM VALE, INVICTUS - 7/10/2012

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      • Original Poster

        #4
        I read thru Beowulf ‘s post and it is all very helpful. I have a feeling my trainer will be riding my horse in the Janet Foy clinic this weekend. I am scare to mess it up further before I see the doctor. I did fall yesterday in the house while I was going to sit down at my weaving bench. I think I was stepping sideways and sitting and all of a sudden the left leg just gave out and down I went. So now I am K-taped and wearing a brace to try to hold together until my appointment on Monday.
        Last edited by Puddin Pie; Oct. 24, 2019, 10:48 PM.
        RIP Mydan Mydandy+
        RIP Barichello

        Comment


        • #5
          You can definitely do more damage if your knee keeps giving out. I have had ACL repair surgery on both knees. The first I did PT to get it in better shape for the surgery and worked around work schedule so it was 6 months later i had surgery. Second one I partially tore, did PT and was good as new until I finished off the tear. I did PT but it was unstable. Took about 4 years to decide to do the surgery, as it started giving me problem and I was worried about causing further damage. Second surgery was this past April and I just started riding again a couple weeks ago. I just do light trail riding. Surgeon was pretty adamant that I wait AT LEAST 6 months. It really takes 9 months to fully heal. Good luck!

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          • #6
            Originally posted by stressgirl37 View Post
            You can definitely do more damage if your knee keeps giving out. I have had ACL repair surgery on both knees. The first I did PT to get it in better shape for the surgery and worked around work schedule so it was 6 months later i had surgery. Second one I partially tore, did PT and was good as new until I finished off the tear. I did PT but it was unstable. Took about 4 years to decide to do the surgery, as it started giving me problem and I was worried about causing further damage. Second surgery was this past April and I just started riding again a couple weeks ago. I just do light trail riding. Surgeon was pretty adamant that I wait AT LEAST 6 months. It really takes 9 months to fully heal. Good luck!
            Totally agree. (I'm 60) Partially tore my right ACL last Nov. Did 2 courses of PT to strengthen that knee and both legs and rode 3 months later (i ride dressage and have a forward, reliable mare, so no undo stress on my legs) However I could never run and had to be ultra careful going down stairs or dismounting.
            Got ACL surgery last week (an allograft - as I pretty much just ride with a little hiking. Autograft is better for younger, much more active skiers, runners, etc... )

            Doc mentioned that not getting surgery could allow arthritis to develop more easily (because you are not as active and do not have full range of motion on the knee), and in fact, I had some starting in that knee already. I did some research and decided he may be correct.

            I will do PT faithfully and ride when Doc gives me the clear in 6 months or more.

            I will eventually need surgery on the other ACL as it is very loose. However the PT exercises have helped extremely well. I was told my hips were weak at the start of my PT. I thought, I ride and do low level pilates so how can they be weak? Well they were weak. Did lots of hip strengthening exercises and it took much needed pressure off my knees.

            As a rider i have found that good PT is very helpful to learn about your body.

            Good luck and hope these remarks help with your decision.

            Comment


            • #7
              I tore my acl and meniscus and have neither repaired. I ride and English is definitely easier than western.

              Because of my age, weight and activity level, I didn't have surgery. I also already have arthritis developing and was told that I will eventually have to have knee replacement. But I don't have that annoying collapsing of the knee that some have. So I don't have any issues doing daily activities. Talk to your doctor and you p/t and see what your individual needs are.

              Just take heart that you can still ride. Just take care of your body.
              https://fearlessriderreturns.blogspot.com/

              Comment


              • #8
                I also had a complete tear of both ACLs four decades ago. I was told to get surgery, and I declined because I had seen a terrible mess the doctor made of a knee on a Freind of mine

                So, no surgery, several years of limping around, but was riding almost immediately without a Dr chiming in.

                I eventually went to an orthopedic surgeon about 20 years later. He made me do a whole bunch of silly things like walk on my knees, and asked me lots of questions. Finally he said he would never do surgery on me, and that as long as I stayed skinny, it would do more than the surgery could do for me (at the time I weighed 100#)

                He also pointed out that if he did surgery on the knee, it would still be a weak link… And that if I ended up getting a full knee replacement it would be much better to do that with the knee that had not been altered. So here I am at 56 with pretty much no knee pain at all. I don’t ski or skate. If I know I am going to go on a long hike with much downhill, I wrap my knee up and take an Advil.

                I’m a dressage trainer, and I ride a lot. Riding does nothing to bother my knee at this point. If I hike up my stirrups and I decide to do some jumping, I’ve got about a half an hour in that length of stirrup before things start to feel womky.

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