Your journey to your Anterior Cruciate Ligament Reconstruction starts with the clinic consultation.
You will be referred to me by your GP – I can see you in the clinic at the Woodland Hospital in Kettering without a referral but I will have to write to your Doctor with the outcome of your consultation.
During the appointment we will discuss your symptoms and their impact to your daily activities, and your aspired lifestyle. I will examine your knee and I will organise a series of X-rays and scans, if you don’t already have had. We will also go through all your medical conditions, your medication and your allergies. It will be extremely helpful if you bring with you a list of your current medication.
Rupture of the Anterior Cruciate Ligament (ACL) is a result of a traumatic incident and may result in instability of the knee. There is no predictor of which knees will become symptomatic and the “rule of thirds” applies:
A third of patients are completely asymptomatic following a rehabilitation program following injury.
Another third will only be symptomatic in certain activities.
The last third will experience instability even in simple activities of daily living.
If we agree that your symptoms are intrusive and conservative treatment has been exhausted, you will be offered an ACL reconstruction.
I will explain you the benefits and the risks of the procedure and if you can accept them, we will go through a formal consent form.
You will need to commit yourself to a lengthy rehabilitation program and accept that it will be at least a year before you return to contact sports.
A full medical will be organised through the pre-assessment Clinic
Your comorbidities will be reviewed and optimised before this procedure. You may need to stop some medication before the operation, or change the dosings.
You will be admitted in the hospital on the day of your operation
We will meet to discuss any outstanding details and confirm your consent. You will meet your Anaesthetist that will explain you the type of anaesthetic you will have. The standard practice for ACL reconstruction is a General Anaesthetic.
You will be escorted in the Anaesthetic Room and the anaesthesia will start
After the anaesthetic is completed you will come inside the Operating Theatre where your ACL reconstruction will be performed. The procedure is performed arthroscopicaly.
Arthroscopy is the technique that we use an endoscope connected to a camera and a high definition screen to inspect inside the knee joint through small holes and perform surgery.
The graft I use for the reconstruction is fashioned from tendons that I harvest from your leg. The graft is fixed inside the knee
At the end of the procedure you will be taken to Theatre Recovery Room and as soon as your condition has returned to stable you will be taken to the ward.
You will be discharged from the hospital the same day, after your physiotherapist and your nurse decide that you are safe to independently walk
You will start your rehabilitation as an outpatient. The importance of adherence to your physiotherapist’s instructions cannot be overemphasised.
Two weeks after your operation you will have your wound stitches or clips removed.
If your recovery is uneventful we will meet in the clinic six weeks later. I will inform you on the findings of the arthroscopy and the outlook for your individual condition.
You will progress in your activities under the close supervision of your physiotherapist.
We will have a last appointment in the clinic soon before you are allowed to return to contact sports, a year following you operation.