Erica Knupp: Injury after injury

she’s been beaten up a bit, but she still keeps on

Regan Quinn, Reporter

Countless casts, three surgeries, thirty three months of therapy, eight hours a day hooked up to a machine, metal plates,  and an artificial knee cap are things most children do not have to go through.  As a fifth grader at the time, Erica Knupp had to deal with all of this and more.  

On May 23, 2011, Knupp was slide tackled during a soccer game against Norwin.  Her knee was on the side of her leg.  Being so young, she wasn’t allowed to get surgery because she was still growing.  Being operated on would have negatively affected her development.  She was put in a cast for nine long months.  Doctors had to put her under twice because she couldn’t straighten her leg all the way or bend it all the way because of the cartilage building up.  She went through nine months of therapy and was working with a trainer to go back to playing soccer.

She played two games before playing Norwin again and re-breaking it.  Exactly one year later, Erica was slide-tackled.  

At this point, there was no choice but to have surgery.  It took three surgeries to fix her ACL, MCL, and tibia.  Metal plates were put in, running all the way down her leg and up to her hip.  A new kneecap was also needed.  After these surgeries, Erica was in therapy for two years.  

 

She was also homeschooled because she had to be attached to a machine for eight hours a day.  The machine would bend her knee to 180 degrees.  “I actually really loved being homeschooled.  My grades were better and I wish I was still homeschooled” said Erica.  She likes learning by being one on one with whoever is teaching her and likes that you can learn at your own pace.

Erica still does not have all of the muscle back in her leg that she used to have.  She still trouble running and jumping.  These problems haven’t been completely solved.  She can’t play soccer and can barely run or jump without being in pain.  She stays in shape by working out at Planet Fitness.  Even after all of the surgeries, and therapy, Erica still needs another surgery.