Learn about recovery and rehabilitation for your unhappy triad surgery
Recovery from surgery for an unhappy triad can be a long and intensive process due to the severity of the injury and the surgery. Most patients find their recovery time to be anywhere between 6-9 months depending on how quickly they heal and the extent of their injuries. The process also involves frequent follow ups and physical therapy.
Unhappy Triad Recovery: The First Days
The goal of the first few days after surgery is to reduce swelling and pain. Normally during this time the patient will frequently ice their knee to reduce swelling. They also will be asked to elevate their knee and minimize movement. For any neccessary movement they normally will use crutches. In some cases the doctor may have the patient wear a knee brace.
Unhappy Triad Recovery: Weeks 1 and 2
Once the swelling decreases, the next goal is to help the patient straighten their knee completely and begin exercising with a physical therapist. This normally involves specific exercises to begin to regain motion in the knee. While not working with the physical therapist the patient usually will remain on crutches with the knee stabilized.
Unhappy Triad Recovery: Weeks 3-6
At this point the goal is to focus on building strength in and around the knee by working with a physical therapist. The exercises and activities will help the knee to grow stronger and also help build the support muscles around the knee. In some cases, patients can begin light activity on their own at this point.
Unhappy Triad Recovery: Weeks 7-12
During this phase of treatment, the patient is able to add more physical activity to their routine including light jogging. However the patient must stay away from contact sports or activities where any twisting of the knee may occur.
Unhappy Triad Recovery: Months 4-7
During the final phase of recovery from an unhappy triad surgery, the patient continues to increase exercises and activity under the care of their doctor or physical therapist. Most patients feel that their knee is completely healed and start more rigorous activities to early. This leads to new injuries.