Recovery process after a knee injury

28 November 2019

Recovery process after a knee injury

Recovery process after a knee injury

The knee is one of the largest joints in our body, on which we depend to move, but problems are common, both in athletes and in people who do not perform any sport.

The anatomy of the knee is quite complex formed by the distal end of the femur and proximal tibia (femur-tibial joint) and the femur with the kneecap (patella-femoral joint). It also has ligaments and muscles that aided by the meniscus, stabilize the knee, cushioning the impact on the cartilages.

          Fig. I - Knee Anatomy

In the case of a knee injury submitted to surgery, recovery depends on the injured mechanisms according to the specificity of the injury.

We will then explain what is the most appropriate process for a recovery from injury, until you again start a practice of daily physical activity and autonomous.

To point out that the whole process described, in order to be adequate and specific, must be multidisciplinary:

1st phase: Physician / Physiotherapist (more clinical phase);
2nd phase: Physical Therapist / Exercise Technician (clinical exercise).

The first phase (more clinical phase) of the rehabilitation process, goes through a physical therapy treatment:
• Decreased edema;
• Decreased pain;
• Restoration of joint amplitude in knee flexion;
• Passive mobilization of the member;
• Massage;
• Walking training (with or without crutches)
• Strength gain / stabilization in the muscles surrounding the knee, either through electrostimulation or elastic resistance.

This process is performed gradually and accompanied by a physical therapy professional.

The second phase (clinical exercise) is also a rehabilitation process and should be performed through the partnership of the Physical Therapist and the Exercise Technician, soon after regaining knee functional capacity.

The support of the Exercise Technician aims to prescribe and monitor a training program:
• Strength gain and muscle mass;
• Bipedal balance;
• Stabilization and balance of the proximal and distal joints (hip, ankle);
• coordination;
• physical conditioning;

Training has to be as specific and individualized as possible according to each person's particularities in order to become motivating, safe and for results to appear as quickly as possible.

Final note: the goal is for all professionals to be less and less involved during the rehabilitation process, until the person can be autonomous and continue to perform their daily life without any limitations, never failing to exercise, as it is fundamental for the improvement of life of all people, especially those who already have a more severe clinical history.

By Fábio Oliveira, Personal Trainer at Bodylab Academy.