Active Physical Therapy is treating a healthy 37 year old male who competes in martial arts. He underwent a “routine” knee arthroscopic surgical procedure due to what his doctor thought was a possible ACL tear. Just out of surgery there was good news, his ACL was not torn however, the surgeon completed some “clean up” to his knee. For the next week or so everything was going well in post operative physical therapy. Approximately two weeks after he was out of the operating room he began experiencing posterior knee pain. Due to the location and severity of his symptoms, he was sent to the emergency room for a possible blood clot or deep vein thrombosis. After some tests, it was found that he indeed had a blood clot in his lower leg. He is now taking medications for treatment and prophylaxis.
Take home message: Sometimes after prolonged inactivity (sitting, traveling in car or airplane for work, or following a surgery), blood clots are a risk factor that is independent of patient’s age or lifestyle. Early diagnosis is essential for keeping the patient not only well but to keep the patient alive.
Our patient is now two months post operative and on a healthy course of recovery.