Tuesday, March 15th, 2016

You’ve been on crutches since Dec. 9th?


While I’m sitting in the back yard with my leg elevated thanks to the special post op ACL surgery pillow Tito Ortiz’s let me borrow, I thought it would be important to update everyone with where I am in with the injury.  Dec. 9th was my Birthday, basically during  the last couple minutes of the final round of wrestling I suffered a broken femur when my leg gave-way mid grapple.

Immediately after the injury occurred we called 911, who took an X-ray and confirmed there was a broken leg, and said the knee injury is extensive, but that I would need to see a specialist.

In the Emergency Room I was asked the dreaded question “Do you have Medical Insurance?”–to which I replied, “No”.

I’m sure lots of American’s are in a similar position, however maybe their hobbies and career interests do not put them at as much risk, or maybe they just earn a lot more.  Newly returning to the California scene I was still working at developing my client base and group class schedules.  Thanxs to the help of Total MMA Studios and Punishment Gym I was finally starting to pick up enough classes on the schedule to suffice a wage. That being said, I hadn’t even looked into my insurance options and with 10 years abroad have no idea what this ‘OBAMA CARE’ health insurance is…I did however know this ‘Open Enrolment Season’ of the New Year was arriving quickly.

I told the lady in the ER I was living in CA, and that currently my wages were not significant enough to which she applied me for Emergency MediCal which covered the ER visit, and then referred me to an office which later approved me for long term mediCAL coverage.  While MediCAL covers most medical procedures, the state dr offices and procedures certainly are of a different standard that private offices.

While experiencing delays with sorting through the OBAMA CARE process, my head coaches Juliano Prado and Adriano Nasal stepped up to the plate in a HUGE WAY.  They were actually on the mats when the injury occurred, and as Juliano described it “it was the worst training injury I’ve ever seen”.

Wanting to make sure I got the proper treatment needed for the injury he immediately contacted Doc Kessler  (while I was in the ER) for a referral to Doc. Giacobetti.  Juliano saved my ass by having an accident insurance policy for his gym with the same company that has been providing insurance for the fighters competing at the GET DOWN MMA Promotion. As a Black Belt who will eventually be running a gym this was a clear reason not to skimp corners, as a paying customer this is now something I would look into at any gym I trained at in the future.  Really was an amazing blessing having Juliano and Nasal being in a position to where they could help me get this surgery process started quickly.

Immediately Dr. Giacobetti ordered the MRI and from there explained I had a torn ACL, MCL, PCL and a Meniscus that needed to be repaired, but that he was going to wait for the fracture in the femur to heal and the swelling to decrease.  Giving me a set of crutches and a hinged-brace he scheduled the surgery, was scheduled about 6 weeks later for Feb. 6th.

Feb 6th arrived with a bit on anxiousness, and the surgery was a painful one.  I remember waking up from surgery in tears with the amount of pain I was in, before eventually eventually passing out into a medicated zombie sleep.  Following the surgery while I was still sedated my mom made the return trip to AZ–which when I woke up the following morning was the correct choice.  I would say for the next 3-4 days the knee was so painful that leaving the bed was virtually impossible.  My mom kept a plastic container for number 1 restroom breaks, and she helped me with food and water as I basically kept medicated to sleep through the knee pain.

The second week following the surgery was considerably better in regards to overall pain.  Throughout the process I was able to ice my knee 3-4 times (sometimes 5…lol) for around 20 minutes.  This icing process really started back in Dec. as the swelling in the knee has never really decreased.

My first post operation meeting with Dr. G was last week.  He said he was happy with the progress he sees in the stability of the knee.  He went on to explain to me that the most important part of rehab during the next two week is going to be focusing on getting full extension in my knee (being able to make the back of my knee sit flat on the floor when seated on the ground), and then focus on flexing my quads, activating my calves with toe extensions, before eventually working my way to leg extensions.

The leg has been in a lot of pain since the surgery. I’ve been trying to do many of the exercises Ivan Caramasino has shown me, which has really helped leading up to the surgery.  My follow up appointment is scheduled for Tomorrow in Manhattan Beach.  Since the surgery I’ve basically been trying to ice to leg 4-5 times a day using frozen peas inside of a gallon storage bag.  I’ve tried to keep it elevated and have  started with some of the post surgery bed exercises available on youtube.


Well, the Dr said my leg still needs full extension, so he has suggested I start placing a 30-50lbs bag of dog food.  I’m still not walking, however he has finally taken me of the CPM machine and has cleared me to start Physical Therapy, which I will be starting Tomorrow, Tuesday  March. 15th, almost 3 full months since the injury.

The knee is still very swollen, which the Doctor has said will last the next 6-8 months.  Overall this has been a very painful injury, and I am excited to get back into the gym.