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Well, after 20 years of skiing, ski racing, coaching and pacesetting, I finally did it. Little too much weight on the uphill ski, hand check on the snow and the resulting save attempt left me with a right knee containing a completely torn ACL and partially torn LCL. Wasn’t even in a course. I am currently in a full length brace (I have full range of motion) to protect the LCL in the hopes that it will heal tight enough to not have to be replaced along with the ACL.

I have read several threads on ACL reconstruction here on RBR and some skiing sites and it seems pretty straightforward, but there isn’t much out there on LCL tears/reconstruction. Questions.

Has anybody had experience with the LCL side of things? Is it a more difficult rehab?

I would like to do some spinning on my bike/trainer, but I am not sure how it will affect the LCL. Any experiences?

What kinds of time frames/intensity levels have those of you with ACL/LCL reconstruction had in terms of getting back on a bike?

I meet with the Ortho/Sports Med Doc that will be doing the surgery this week, but thought hearing some real life experiences would be nice.

A good friend whom I ski race with is an ortho surgeon (all trauma) and he assures me that I will be on the bike come spring without any problems. My ski season is gone, but I am now really looking forward to spring/biking.

Thoughts - Experiences?

Sorry for being so long winded - Dave
 

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I have a reconstructed LCL

DriftlessDB said:
<snip>
Has anybody had experience with the LCL side of things? Is it a more difficult rehab?

I would like to do some spinning on my bike/trainer, but I am not sure how it will affect the LCL. Any experiences?

What kinds of time frames/intensity levels have those of you with ACL/LCL reconstruction had in terms of getting back on a bike?

Thoughts - Experiences?

Sorry for being so long winded - Dave
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Dave - Bummer on the injury.
Anyway..Back in '97 I tore my LCL, a meniscus, and damaged my ACL in a mountain bike crash. I'm a little forgetful on the specific timelines associated with all of it, but Let's see..
I injured it in September, '97. I rehabbed it nearly completely that fall..and I think I skied, but I don't recall. I must have....but not much. Spent a lot of time at the gym doing leg presses. The knee, however, was still unstable, so I had surgery in May '98. I had a bicep tenodisis (I'm not sure of the spelling) - basically, they took part of my hamstring tendon to rebuild the LCL. It was not done arthoscopically, so I have a *lovely* nice long scar down the outside of my knee! Makes me the tough biker chick...yeah. My ACL was not damaged enough to warrant repair, so I can't speak to rehabbing that ligament in addition to the LCL.
After the surgery, I was immobile for something like 8 weeks, which was really awful. I was on crutches for another bunch of weeks after that. Don't recall the specifics. It took quite a while for me to actually make a complete rotation on the cranks on the bike at the PT's office. Getting full range of motion back was agony, but make sure you work with your PT towards that goal.
So...Surgery in May, and I don't think I really was riding much until September, and then my Dr. said just road, no mountain biking, which puts different stresses on the knee. I skied for sure that winter with a custom Donjoy brace, that I wore for 2 seasons. One thing my PT kept stressing...you may have strength back in your knee, but that won't mean the graft is *healed*. There is a BIG difference b/t getting the strength and mobililty back to a surgery site and having the graft actually heal. Since I'm not overly competitive, and I don't get paid a screaming amount of money to return quickly to the field of play, I think it's worth it for the long-term health of the repair to be a bit conservative on returning. But you should really work with your doctor and PT on that kind of stuff.
Good luck.
 
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