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Broken Shell Of A Man....

Thread Status: Hello , There was no answer in this thread for more than 60 days.
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Working Class Spearo
Mar 17, 2002
well maybe the title's a tad bit dramatic.

a 1600lb camel went to to ground while I was riding it and rolled over me and now I have a massive cartlige damage to my right knee and a complete rupture of my ACL. So no walking for 6 weeks and I don;t know how long it's going to take before I can push a fin - we'll see what the surgeon says. has anyone here ever had any knee surgery done? and if so can they lend any helpfull advice on getting back in the water ASAP?

Any help is greatly appreciated - THANKS
Hi Amphibious,

I have had my ACL repaired, and have suffered significant cartilage damage. I'm pretty much back to normal, but I still get swelling. That's a fact of life when you lose both lubrication and shock-absorbtion from cartilage damage. Go and get a truck-load of ice-trays, for your recovery and beyond. Stay positive and pay attention to what your knee tells you. If you do stuff it doesn't like, it will let you know. Loudly.

As regards your ACL:

After surgery, you need to do three things. Good advice, flexibility and strength.

Just about the most important thing is a good physiotherapist. Your surgeon should be able to recommend a good one, but make sure that you find a good one, and that you understand what he/she is doing for you and why. It can be easy to turn up two or three times a week, hand over your hard-earned, and get no-where fast. This happened to me. I was most concerned about surfing again, particularly because the knees are bent inwards a little when standing on a board. I made sure that my (second) physio had this in mind, and understood where I needed to be, as in maximising the strength of the muscles controlling/limiting lateral movement. But not only that, I made sure he knew what an important part of my life it is.

Flexibility is the first thing to work on, then work on regaining strength, slowly. Don't do anything because you read it on the internet, or because a famous sportsperson did it in their recovery. Each injury is a little different. Bear in mind that if you do not recover your flexibility within a few months (say two or three - but check with the professionals), your range of movement is likely to be limited for life, and can only really be treated with more surgery to remove scar tissue.

Never exceed what is recommended by your physio/surgeon, just make sure that when you achieve a certain goal, or find an exercise too easy, let the professionals know before you increase your resistance or your range of movement.

The strength will come back almost on it's own, but that's not to say you shouldn't exercise as much as possible within the guidelines that your physiotherapist gives you.

I dive mostly in cold water, and I wear my surfing booties inside my fins. I have a little bit of trouble getting them on, and pretty much need to do it while out of the water. Sometimes this results in a littel pain as I get myself over the sand/rocks, and into the water.
The point being, I reckon that your biggest danger when you do get back into it will be from either an awkward step on the rocks or tripping over with fins on, or the shorebreak itself getting a hold of your fin and moving your lower leg sideways or twisting it on an axis about the ankle.

Your cartilage won't recover, I think about all you can do is take supplements to promote the health of the entire joint. Eat lots of fish!!!

Remember, don't take my, or any-one's, word for it. Only take word of the health professionals.

One more thing. Are you looking for a promotion? Do you have any other comittments that could interfere with your treatment/recovery?

I'd say that unless it's your family, it's not as important as your health and well-being. Don't compromise your recovery, and always keep in mind that you can't get another knee. Well, you actually can, but it still won't be anywhere near as good, or last as long, even as the buggered one you have now.

Whether it's spearing, skiing, or whatever, you want to get back to it as soon as possible, but you also want to be able to do it for a long time, and you want to be able to enjoy stuff like that with your kids.

Good Luck.

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Reactions: Amphibious
Get several opinions concerning the surgery....dont listen to only one doc on this. Other than that, youve gotta realize that things arent going to be the same for a good while. Ive seen alot of people have such surgerys done and typically things never are back to how they once were. Keep positive thoughts going and hold your head high; this will bring you further than youll ever imagine...

And also concerning supplements; when ones food is broken done its all done so to such a small level than by eating cartilage wont do anyhting to your knee period. Any tissue in the body with a light to white coloration (joint tissue aka many ligaments that Im not going to name) have extremely low vasculerization (sp?) so therefore have very low blood flow which eqauls extremely slow healing. Thats just how it works adn anyone that says different is wrong.

My best advise for now is get another opinon, baby it, and if you have to have surgery baby it (considering proper exersize of the joint and the pretaining muscle groups) afterword and avoid such activities that are 'high stress' on the knees.

I hope this isnt coming across as youll never be normal again; the chance is there but watch what you do......everyone in this world is only given so many of such things; somethings the scientific communtiy can make, for the most part like new, and the others are just as good as we know how to do. The body is more complex than well ever (or at least for a long time) understand.

Also for your own knowledge, in case you havent already, go find an anatomy book and see how much actually goes into your knee as you may be impressed...

Good luck bud,
Last edited:

I am so sorry to hear about your accident.. I only dislocated my knee and was out the best part of fishing season last year.. I hope you get better soon, I know how hard it is to just sit around when you used to do all sort of things..

God Bless,

Shit! Take care Willer: Sounds like great advice from Hodad and drkebs. Stay determined but take your time and don't push too hard.
Best wishes,
Erik Y.
Amphi: Get better quick dude...:(

If you do need a brace, better get a stainless steel one. The other option would be a soft brace (neoprene type), which is what i wear for cricket. I find swimming and diving isnt as strenunous and doesnt need a brace.

Just what the frig were you doing rolling a camel? :confused:
sorry to hear that dude wish you fast recovering for spearing and hunting;)
i've had three operations on my left knee....

the third one (Oct2002) took the longest to recover from and fortunately it fixed the problem. i was in a world of pain after the operation :) made worse by haemoarthrosis. i couldn't walk at all for over a week, then used crutches for a while and was hobbling and limping around for a couple of months afterwards. it took a long while to build up the strength again. sounds bad and it was, but...

9-10 months after the operation i was using my monofin to dive deeper than i'd ever been before...

be patient and positive and do your exercises... you will recover. good luck.
Thanks Guys - lots of good info here - much appreciated! almost 2 weeks now and still no walking - but swelling is way down - saw my patella for the first time today. :D

soft brace (neoprene type), which is what i wear for cricket

I see I'm not the only one with problems... Cricket? rofl
Oi !!!

Taken out by a camel!!!!!!! Nice one Will!!! :duh :duh

Just glad it wasn't a bear!!!!:D :D :D

Hope you heal soon!!!!

OOoooo OOoooo Got my leg brace today! and it is part Neoprene!!!! so I guess it's like a little wetsuit for my leg! well my wettie doesn;t have big steel hinges... but none the less... can;t dive - but got my neoprene fix! :D
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