Return to Play: Sports Related Knee Injury (Anterior Cruciate Ligament Surgery) Milestones of recovery Dr Sanjiv Rampal Orthopaedic Consultant Kuala Lumpur

Phase 1 – Recovery from Surgery– first 2 weeks
ACL rehabilitation will start immediately after surgery. Emphasis on flexing the knee to halfway.
The regime is usually for the first two weeks is not full weight bearing.
Use crutches and a short list of rehab exercises.
Gait training focuses on quadriceps of thigh muscle strengthening.

Phase 2 – Strength & Neuromuscular Control 3-10 weeks
During phase two you should be able to bear weight on the leg.
During ACL rehab your therapist will focus on regaining your full range of motion.
Once your knee begins to heal, you will be able to incorporate low-impact activities.

Phase 3 – Running, Agility and Landings 11 weeks to 17 weeks

You will need to continue the recommended ACL strengthening exercises to help prevent future injuries.
Running less than 2km per day. Gradual increase.

It is often recommended that you continue wearing a knee brace during this phase.

Phase 4 – Return to Sport 18-23 weeks
After six months you should be able to return to sports. Improving the speed of running.
Strength and symmetrical dynamic balance are important. 
To return to the sport you need to be confident and comfortable. You also need to understand injury prevention.

Phase 5 –Return to full performance – 24 weeks onwards

Full team training of sports.
Strengthen muscles and prevent future injuries
Focus mainly on improving performance, power, and strength.

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