ACL surgery recovery time
injuries regardless of whether they require surgery necessitate “time off” so
the ACL and other affected portions of the knee can heal. If surgery is necessary, patients are usually directed to
wear a knee brace and/or use crutches. In rare situations where other
injuries exist, an above the knee case (AKC) may be needed. The brace and crutches are generally
utilized for the first six weeks after surgery. During this time,
rehabilitation through physical therapy will occur. A typical timeline (after
surgery) for patients to do the following activities is:
rest, ice, elevation, compression—2-4 weeks (occurs during the 2 weeks after
walking and biking—12 weeks
competitive sports—no earlier than 8 months (9-12 months typical)
you have had multiple or a serious ACL injury, your recovery time may be
prolonged. Remember, if a patient attempts to resume “normal” activities too
quickly, the ACL may not fully heal and additional surgery may be necessary.
Athletes should be careful to follow their doctor and surgeon’s advice.
Returning to a competitive sport too early may cause permanent damage to your
ACL, causing your mobility to be irreparably harmed.
medical professional usually will clear athletes to return to their respective
sports when the patient has:
full range of motion
pain in the affected knee
the ability to walk and run without pain or limping
the ability to move laterally and diagonally without pain
the ability to jump, crouch, and kneel.