John is an active man in his late 50’s who works as a facilities manager. While walking down stairs, John tore his left quadriceps tendon. Two days after sustaining the injury, he received surgery to repair the tendon. For 5 weeks after surgery, he wore a long leg brace that kept him from bending his knee; however he was weight-bearing. At the start of his physical therapy, John had restrictions with all activities, including getting into and out of a car, dressing. He had strong pain through his left hip.
John’s physical therapy began with range of motion exercises to increase the bending in his knee. He had very little motion in his knee due to being in the straight leg brace for 5 weeks. We also began strengthening his lower leg muscles in order for him to have a normalized gait pattern and increase his activity tolerance. His program was made increasingly challenging to his tolerance. As he progressed, balance and stabilization exercises were added.
He was given strengthening exercises and stretches to perform at home to complement his therapy program. John eventually progressed from mat exercises to use of the weight machines. His knee pain and swelling began to reduce. Within three months of his surgery he was riding a bike and had full left knee range of motion. Having returned to his pre-accident form, he was discharged to a gym program.