Patella Tendon Repair

WHAT YOU SHOULD KNOW:

Patella tendon repair is surgery to fix your torn patellar tendon. The patellar tendon attaches the bottom of your kneecap to your shin bone. The tendon works together with your muscles and ligaments to bend and extend your leg.

AFTER YOU LEAVE:

Medicines:

  • Medicines can help decrease or prevent an infection.

  • Take your medicine as directed. Call your healthcare provider if you think your medicine is not helping or if you have side effects. Tell him if you are allergic to any medicine. Keep a list of the medicines, vitamins, and herbs you take. Include the amounts, and when and why you take them. Bring the list or the pill bottles to follow-up visits. Carry your medicine list with you in case of an emergency.

Wound care:

Care for your wound as directed. Carefully wash the wound with soap and water. Dry the area and put on new, clean bandages as directed. Change your bandages when they get wet or dirty. If you have pieces of medical tape over your incision, do not pull them off. They will start to peel off on their own within 2 weeks.

Self-care:

  • Elevate your knee above the level of your heart as often as you can. This will help decrease swelling and pain. Prop your knee on pillows or blankets to keep it elevated comfortably.

  • Apply ice on your knee for 15 to 20 minutes every hour or as directed. Use an ice pack, or put crushed ice in a plastic bag. Cover it with a towel. Ice helps prevent tissue damage and decreases swelling and pain.

Use assistive devices as directed:

  • You may need to use crutches or a cane for support when you walk. These devices help decrease stress and strain on your knee. You may need to limit the amount of weight you put on your knee. Ask for more information about how to use crutches or a cane correctly.

  • You may need to wear a brace, splint, or cast after surgery. These will help protect your knee and keep it from moving so it can heal properly. Ask for more information about how to care for your brace, splint, or cast.

Go to physical therapy:

A physical therapist teaches you exercises to help improve movement and strength and to decrease pain.

Follow up with your healthcare provider as directed:

You may need to return to have your wound checked or stitches removed. Write down your questions so you remember to ask them during your visits.

Contact your healthcare provider if:

  • You have a fever or chills.

  • Your wound is red, swollen, or draining pus.

  • You have more pain or trouble moving, even after you take pain medicine.

  • You have questions or concerns about your condition or care.

Seek care immediately or call 911 if:

  • You feel lightheaded, short of breath, and have chest pain.

  • You cough up blood.

  • Your leg feels warm, tender, and painful. It may look swollen and red.

  • Your toes feel numb, tingly, cool, and are pale.

  • Blood soaks through your bandage.

  • Your stitches come apart.

  • You have severe pain.

© 2014 Truven Health Analytics Inc. Information is for End User's use only and may not be sold, redistributed or otherwise used for commercial purposes. All illustrations and images included in CareNotes® are the copyrighted property of A.D.A.M., Inc. or Truven Health Analytics.

The above information is an educational aid only. It is not intended as medical advice for individual conditions or treatments. Talk to your doctor, nurse or pharmacist before following any medical regimen to see if it is safe and effective for you.

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