Proximal Hamstring Repair

The hamstring is a muscle in the back of the leg that is commonly injured among athletes. This injury can be acute (sudden) or chronic (long term) and results in pain and decreased strength of the affected leg. If conservative treatment fails or if chronic hamstring injuries occur, the patient may benefit from an open proximal hamstring repair.

Open proximal hamstring repairs are not performed as frequently as other orthopedic procedures; however, the results are quite good. Patients are able to resume activities and sports at all competitive levels.

During an open proximal hamstring repair, an approximately 3–5 cm incision is made at the crease of the buttock. Next the damaged hamstring tendon is located and any frayed or damaged tissue is removed. Once a clean edge of healthy tendon is achieved, it is secured using strong suture back to its insertion on the ischial tuberosity of the pelvis.

Postoperative Instructions:


  • You will be placed in a hinged hip brace after your surgery. You are to wear this at all times except when bathing. The brace will be preset to limit the flexion of your hip. You may only move within this preset range of motion. Do not force the motion though because this will likely cause pain.


  • An injection of local anesthesia was injected into your hip after the completion of the operation. This medication will wear off in 5 to 6 hours. Therefore, begin taking the pain medication (e.g. Vicodin, Percocet, etc) immediately when you get home. This will prevent you from having severe pain. Take the pain medication every 4 hours until you go to bed.
  • The day after surgery you can take 600 mg of Ibuprofen (Advil/Motrin) every 6 hours to help with inflammation and pain. This medication will help cut down the use of narcotic-based pain medication. However, if you still have pain after taking the Ibuprofen, continue taking the pain medication every 4-6 hours as needed.
  • A sleeping medication (e.g. Ambien) is also provided to help you sleep at night. Take one tablet 30 minutes before you plan to sleep.


  • Your dressing is water-proof; you can shower as soon as the day after surgery. Do NOT submerge in a bath tub however; only shower and allow water to run over your dressing and pat it dry.
  • Your sutures will be removed at your first post operative visit at which point you will be able to get your incisions wet.


  • Please call the office prior to, or immediately following, your surgery in order to schedule a postoperative appointment. This should be scheduled 7-10 days after surgery. At that visit your stitches will be removed and you will be given a prescription to begin physical therapy.

If you have any questions or concerns, please contact our assistant at (310) 659-2910 extension 3048.

Download the postoperative instructions for your procedure (PDF) 


Recovery Timeline:

Day of surgery: Arrive one to two hours prior to surgery. Procedure will take approximately one to one and a half hours, and recovery time is one hour. For immediate post-op instructions, download the instruction sheet.

One week post-op: First follow-up visit with Dr. Snibbe/Jennifer. Your stitches will be taken out. You will continue icing the surgical area two to three times a day (or more if needed). Continue wearing the hinged hip brace set at 0–45 degrees of flexion. Do not do any stretching exercises for the first month after surgery. Continue to use crutches as needed.

Two weeks post-op: Second follow-up visit. Continue with hip brace but adjust settings to allow 0–60 degrees of flexion.

Four weeks post-op: Third follow-up visit. Discontinue hip brace. Begin physical therapy to work on range of motion.

Eight weeks post-op: Fourth follow-up visit. Range of motion should be improving. Pain should be resolving. Continue physical therapy to work on strengthening exercises.

Twelve weeks post-op: Fifth follow-up visit. Range of motion and strength testing. You should feel stronger and have very little pain, if any. Near to full recovery is expected at this time.

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Ph. (310) 860-3048 / F. (310) 550-7680
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