Arthroscopic ACL reconstruction surgery takes 1-2 hours and is done as an outpatient in an ambulatory surgery center (ASC). The surgery is performed under general or spinal anesthesia. Orthopedic surgeons who perform this procedure typically have a year of specialized training in arthroscopic surgery and are certified in Sport’s Medicine. A brace is placed on the knee in the recovery room, and you can walk out of the ASC 1-2 hours after surgery on crutches. Since the surgery is not done in a hospital you do not have to worry about COVID-19, hospital errors, or staph infection.
Full recovery from arthroscopic ACL repair surgery takes 6-9 months for regular activity and 9-12 months for athletic competition. For your knee to fully recover the graft must heal into position. The excessive activity could dislodge the graft and ruin the repair. Right after surgery, you will wear a brace to protect your graft. Your surgeon will supervise your recovery and involve a physical therapist.
The good news is that once you are fully recovered from arthroscopic ACL reconstruction surgery the new graft will be strong enough that you can return to full activity, including sports, without restriction.