ACL Injury · Development · Education · Guest Posts · Youth Sports

Austin Seelbach – ACL Surgery and First Days of Rehabilitation

Austin Seelbach

Austin, 15 years of age, had her ACL surgery this past Friday, October 25th and is now in rehabilitation mode.  As with her previous post, this is Austin’s story about the experiences and feelings she has during her ACL injury and recovery.  I hope you enjoy reading about her experience from her own perspective.

Following my ACL knee surgery on Friday, I am now officially on the road to recovery!!!

I have had 2 physical therapy sessions and they have gone extremely well.  Since the surgery, the swelling in my knee has gone down a substantial amount which is fantastic news because when this occurs I am able to do more things and recover quicker.  I have been taking pain medication since my surgery and have not felt any pain.  I am trying to use less of the medication so that I can go back to school as soon as possible.  So far, I wouldn’t say that it’s been an easy recovery, but it hasn’t been very painful.

As for the actual surgery, that was not an experience I would like to have again. My surgery was at 8:30 in Beaufort, SC in a surgery center.  I had to be there at 7:30, which as a teenager you can imagine I was not too happy about.  When I arrived at the center my parents had to do some paperwork and I simply sat watching them.  I have never had surgery before so I had no idea what this was going to be like.

When they called my name to go back, I had to go change into a hospital gown and they had to take my blood pressure, and do all of the normal hospital things.  As soon as they put the IV in my arm, that’s when it really hit me that I was having surgery.  After I got my IV, my anesthesiologist gave me a nerve block.  A nerve block is when they inject medication at the top of my leg where my main nerve is to basically make my whole leg numb.  After my leg was completely numb, is was time to go into surgery.  When they wheeled me into the room, everything was kind of surreal.  I don’t think I realized what was actually happening at the time.  After being wheeled in, all I remember after that was getting my oxygen mask put on, and then I was out.  I don’t even remember falling asleep.

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Austin immediately after surgery with her new best friend!

When I woke up after the surgery, I did not feel good.  I felt queasy, I was shaking because of the trauma that my body had just gone through, and my knee hurt really bad.  I took some pain killers, and wanted to get out of the hospital as soon as I could.  As soon as they cleared me to go, I got into my wheel chair and they slowly put me into my car, and we drove home.  I was really tired and slept the whole way home.

As soon as I got home, I looked at my phone and I had a flood of texts and emails from my friends and family who were wishing me well.  It was awesome to have that support behind me.  Later that day, two of my best friends came over and put me in a much better mood.  I almost felt normal again.

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Austin’s knee after first physical therapy session. Let the Healing Begin!

The next day I had another one of my best friends come over to hang out and say Hi.  Her mom, who is a physical therapist, explained to me a chart that Dr. Dean, who did my surgery, had drawn.  It showed my knee’s strength in the months to come.  What interested me was that my knee is actually really strong right now even though it doesn’t feel like it.  Around the half way mark into my recovery is when I’m going to feel fine, but my knee is actually going to be at its weakest.  I’m not really sure why that is, but I just find that interesting that our body works that way.  When I feel fine, I’m still going to have to be working just as hard as I did from the beginning.


That is how long I have left until I can play soccer again.  6 MONTHS doesn’t seem like a long time when you just throw it around.  When you actually think about it, 6 MONTHS is a long time.  It’s almost a full school year.  In 6 MONTHS, someone could be a totally different person.  I just hope that the harder I work, the faster these next long months go by.

Once again, thank you all for reading.  If you have any questions or comments please contact me in the comment section below.  I would love to answer questions and see comments that you have for me.

Thanks again and I look forward to our continued interaction at

Austin Seelbach

8 thoughts on “Austin Seelbach – ACL Surgery and First Days of Rehabilitation

  1. Austin,

    I don’t know if you remember me, I’m Leslie Dickler, a friend of your grandmother’s that came to some of your basketball games last year.

    Anyway, I think you are a remarkable young lady to share your feelings and experiences so others can better understand ACL surgery.

    Good Job!

  2. Austin….you are an amazing young lady! We are so proud of you and KNOW you will be better than ever!
    Love you….grandma and pop pop

  3. Austin
    Rebecca and I are praying for a speedy recovery for you! I know the girls miss you on the field! Have seen Taylor Bush recently back on the field after her surgery last Spring. The great think is that it is doable! You will play again. Keep working hard.
    Suzanna Johnston

  4. Austin,

    With your spirit and determination, I have no doubt you will be setting the soccer field ablaze in no time! I have been sharing your story with my three young soccer players. They are rooting for you! My eight year old says you are going to recover just like Adrian Peterson from the Minnesota Vikings 🙂

    Tori Chandler

  5. Thanks for sharing your story, Austin! We’re all pulling for you and expect to see you back on the field very soon!

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