Following your doctor's instructions after surgery is most important. You may also work with a physical therapist who recommends exercises to help you improve range of motion by strengthening the muscles around the knee. Following their rehab plan is also critical for full recovery from MCL surgery.
3 MCL Surgery Recovery ComplicationsNot following your doctor's instructions can increase the risk of the following complications:
- Re-injury - Returning to activity too soon or engaging in contact sports before the ligament has fully healed can result in a second rupture or tear.
- Infection - Any incision is susceptible to infection. This complication is easily avoidable with antibiotics that your doctor will prescribe after surgery.
- Knee instability - If you return to activity before the injury has fully healed, you may experience long-term instability in the joint. The MCL is one of seven ligaments in the knee, and one of the most important for providing support in the joint. The key to avoiding this complication is proper rehabilitation. A physical therapist can help you safely return to activity, but you must follow their recommendations to ensure that you don't push yourself too hard too soon after knee surgery.
Some of the complications that cannot necessarily be mitigated during MCL surgery recovery include failure of the repair, prominent hardware, and nerve injury. These types of complications result from the surgery itself and are not caused by patient activities during recovery.
Avoiding Complications During MCL Surgery Recovery
For those complications that are preventable, there are some simple steps you can take to reduce the risk that they will happen to you:
- Follow doctor recommendations
- Participate in physical therapy
- Get sufficient rest
- Use cold compression therapy
As your body heals from surgery, the tissue repairs itself and eventually returns to its pre-injury form and function. However, while this healing is occurring, the body's natural response is inflammation. Using cold compression therapy during this time can help control inflammation and allow the body to heal more quickly.
Game Ready has developed a patented system to deliver active cold and compression therapy directly to the areas where it is most needed. Specialized knee wraps enclose the entire joint and ensure that therapeutic cold reaches all the injured tissues consistently and deeply. Active compression helps control swelling and reduces edema at the same time.
If you expect to go through MCL surgery recovery, talk to your doctor about Game Ready or contact us today to learn more about renting your own system.
Have you ever experienced complications after knee surgery? Tell us about it in the comments section.