ACL injuries are obviously tough for any athlete, but the rehabilitation from that injury is especially long and difficult. In this Ask Dr. Geier video, I answer the question from a young athlete who asks about one of the challenges in the first weeks of rehab after ACL surgery.

Lisa asks:
Is it true for an 18-year-old that if you don’t get 0 degrees or full knee extension by 12 weeks post-ACL surgery you will never get full extension, even with aggressive physical therapy? If it is true, does that mean you will never run as fast as before the injury?

Generally regaining knee range of motion is one of the early duties after ACL reconstruction. Working with a physical therapist is critical. The therapist will help to push the athlete’s knee into full extension and gradually work to restore knee flexion.

It is important to regain that knee range of motion within the first weeks after surgery. In this video, I explain why restoring full motion is important and how patients can best do it.

Also read:
Ask Dr. Geier – When can you return to sports after ACL surgery?
Ask Dr. Geier – Wearing a brace to play with an ACL injury

Rehab after ACL surgery

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