Jeff’s Story: Why He Didn’t Make a Complete
Recovery
After ACL Surgery…

Jeff’s Story: Why He Didn’t Make a Complete
Recovery
After ACL Surgery…

Jeff was a typical 17-year-old football player who was on track to play for the college of his choice after one more season in high school.

Everything was looking good for him until summer football camp. Jeff was warming up and catching passes.

He made a leaping catch on one play and landed with his foot planted sideways and off-balance.

His knee made a sickening popping sound, followed by excruciating pain.

After rushing to the hospital, the doctor diagnosed Jeff’s injury as a torn ACL, and he was going to need surgery.

In the U.S., there are between 100,000 and 200,000 ACL injuries or ruptures annually.

Not every injury requires surgery, but they all need proper therapy and diagnosis for a full recovery.

That didn’t happen for Jeff, at least not until he saw me.

The Problem with Most ACL Rehab Programs

The Problem with Most ACL Rehab Programs

Unfortunately for ACL patients like Jeff, most physical therapists, especially those in hospital-based clinics, rely mainly on ultrasound and electric current treatments.

They tend to prescribe general exercises rather than customizing their treatments to each patient’s specific needs.

The doctor sent Jeff to the hospital’s staff physical therapist whose main focus was on reducing Jeff’s knee pain and increasing his flexibility.

Jeff could walk and run again with traditional ACL therapy but had to give up his dream of playing football.

What the therapists didn’t do was manual mobilization and treatment to Jeff’s knee and, as a result, he developed severe scar tissue.

He never regained his full knee mobility which could have been avoided if the therapist was providing the RIGHT treatment.

Bummer, right?

In other words, Jeff NEVER returned back to football because his therapist never provided the correct treatment after surgery…

What are the Causes and Symptoms of an ACL Tear?

What are the Causes and Symptoms of an ACL Tear?

The anterior cruciate ligament (ACL) is a critical ligament that stabilizes the knee. ACL tears are a frequent injury in athletes. High-impact sports such as basketball, soccer, skiing, football, and even running put tremendous stress on knee joints and ligaments.

The reasons the ACL can tear is due to:

  • Suddenly stopping and changing direction
  • Pivoting your body with your foot firmly planted
  • Landing awkwardly from jumping
  • Getting hit in the knee or having a collision

A torn ACL leaves little doubt that something terrible happened because the signs and symptoms include:

  • A loud pop or sensation in the knee
  • Immediate, excruciating pain
  • Rapid swelling around the knee
  • Unable to move or stand on the knee
  • Feeling unsteady if you put weight on it

With a torn ACL, surgery is your best INITIAL treatment option.

It’s the rehab AFTER surgery that makes all the difference in your recovery, as we’ll see.

Want to See If Our Fort Myers ACL Specialists Can Help You?

Want to See If Our Fort Myers, FL Knee Specialists Can Help You?

Choose which option works best for you…

Option 1

If you’re not quite ready to book an appointment yet, you might have some questions that you would like answered first. We would be happy to chat with you so we can be 100% sure that we can help you… just click the button below to request to speak to us on the phone!

Option 2

We understand that some people want to find out a little more about the cost and availability of physical therapy before booking an appointment. If you want to know about our availability, then please just click the button below and complete the simple form.

Option 3

We realize some people may be unsure if physical therapy is right for them. Are you wondering if it’ll work or if we can help with your problem? If that sounds like you and you’d like to come see for yourself how we can help you, just fill out the simple form below so we can answer your questions.

ACL Surgery & Which Graft Did You Have?

ACL Surgery & Which Graft Did You Have?

ACL surgery is where a surgeon reconstructs or replaces the ACL in the knee.

A combination of surgery plus therapy before and after can restore the knee to its original range of motion.

ACL surgery uses another piece of tendon to graft onto the torn ligament.

The concept is simple.

The surgeon drills a straight hole through both the top of the tibia (leg bone) and the bottom of the Femur (thigh bone).

He threads the holes with the new tendon, tying them off on either side. It’s like a shoelace between two eyelets that hold the knee together.

The incisions are small, leaving little scarring.

Although it’s a delicate surgery, most patients can go home the same day.

Surgeons refer to this type of surgery as a graft, and it can be done with several different graft choices.

There are two types of grafts. An Autograft tendon comes from your body, and an Allograft tendon comes from a donor (a cadaver).

For people under 40 and athletes, an autograft tendon taken from either the patellar tendon, hamstring tendons, or quadriceps tendon is your best option compared to allograft tendons.

Studies show a lower failure rate. More surgeons are opting for the quadriceps tendon as an ACL graft. It’s thicker than other tendons, and harvesting it reduces the risk of anterior knee pain.

The downside with harvesting a tendon from your body is that now you have two places that need to heal. After surgery, getting the right kind of ACL rehab therapy is critical to regaining full knee function and avoiding re-injury.

If you have a torn ACL, expect to undergo physical therapy for at least three weeks before the surgery. The reason is patients who have a stiff knee that lacks a full range of motion before surgery may have mobility issues after.

The 5 Phases of ACL Rehab

The 5 Phases of ACL Rehab

These are the typical phases of a therapy program after surgery.

Phase 1First Two Weeks – You’ll be on crutches for 7 to 10 days. Therapy may include anti-inflammatory drugs and ice packs. Exercises will focus on strengthening the quadriceps plus full knee extension and flexion, improving to 90 degrees.

Phase 2Weeks Two to Six – With an emphasis on protecting the newly grafted ligament, therapy will strengthen the relevant muscle groups. Exercises include those that allow for a full range of motion.

Phase 3Six Weeks to Four Months – For athletic patients, this phase prepares them to return to their sport. Exercises include straight jogging or running with no quick side movements and other knee strength training.

Phase 4Four to Six Months – Therapy will continue exercises to maintain strength and endurance, provided no pain or range of motion issues. Most patients can begin to return to normal physical activities.

Phase 5Return to Usual Activities – Some athletes may return to playing at this point, but a longer wait is advisable. The doctor will test the knee to determine if it will support the stress of that athlete’s specific sport. Most likely, the patient will require a brace for up to two years to help prevent injury.

Not all rehabilitation therapies are equal. To make a complete, long-term recovery, you need the manual therapy that the Gray Method™ provides, especially during the last two phases.

The Gray Method™ – The Modern Approach to ACL Rehab

The Gray Method™ – The Modern Approach to ACL Rehab

The Gray Method™ is different from typical physical therapy for three reasons.

We Detect the Root Cause

Other parts of the body cause them to wear and become vulnerable to injury. The feet, hips, and thoracic spine are where most dysfunctions originate from. We find the origin of the problem so you don’t re-tear your ACL.

Manual Therapy

Manual therapy is a hands-on treatment of muscles, tendons, ligaments, and joints. This method removes the swelling and restores full knee extensions without using outdated or barbaric treatments.

Functional Exercise

Because of our understanding of movement and exercise, we’ll be able to help you make a complete recovery after your ACL surgery. Exercises are crucial to maintain strength and endurance and strengthen the relevant muscle groups.

How Does the Gray Method™ Help ACL Patients Recover?

How Does the Gray Method™ Help ACL Patients Recover?

If you think about it, traditional therapy begins by giving you pills to alleviate the pain.

That’s like mopping up water from a leaking pipe without fixing it.

The pain will always return unless you resolve the underlying issue.

During the last phase of rehab, the Gray Method™ begins to detect WHY you tore the ACL in the first place.

Then you receive customized therapy for a permanent solution so that your knees stay healthy and pain-free for the rest of your life.

I’ve discovered the three most common areas that make knees more prone to injury. They are:

  1. Weakness of your hip
  2. Tightness of your feet and ankles
  3. Excessive mobility at your hip

Take Jeff, for example.

Although fit and in prime condition, he had a prior ankle injury from a skateboard accident when he was 12.

He didn’t realize it, but he was compensating by unconsciously shifting his weight.

The result was some instability in the right knee that led to his injury.

His first rounds of therapy treatments addressed only the pain and mobility, not the root cause.

It’s little wonder why he sustained another injury within six months of his surgery.

After Jeff’s parents consulted with me, we began his treatment using my method. I’m happy to report that Jeff did make a full recovery and went on to play college football in his sophomore year.

A “one-size-fits-all” approach is wrong when it comes to ACL rehab. Traditional therapy had Jeff pedal a bicycle and hope for the best.

Don’t Retear Your ACL

Don’t Retear Your ACL

Without treating the root cause of a knee problem, the likelihood of re-injuring it or tearing the ACL in the opposite leg is high. That’s why we are so thorough in detecting the cause during our examination.

Living with pain in your neck, upper back, hip, feet, or ankles can cause damage to your knees with every step. For example:

  • Weakness around the hip causes the knee to “cave in”
  • Stiff ankle joints cause the knees to move too much
  • Flat feet cause excessive knee rotation

Do you feel any of these symptoms, even if it doesn’t bother you “that much?”

We recommend seeing our specialists before your knees wear out.

Let us show you how the Gray Method™ has worked for thousands of patients every year!

Call our office today at 239-223-0484

If You Want to Make a Complete Recovery After Your ACL Surgery, Contact the Back In Motion Team

If You Want to Make a Complete Recovery After Your ACL Surgery, Contact the Back In Motion Team

If you have knee pain, call us for a free, no-obligation consultation. If you’ve already talked to a doctor, let us give you an unbiased and valuable second opinion.