Since then he has steadily been building up fitness with club side Leicester Tigers, with the 22-year-old glad to finally be back playing regularly.
Tuilagi enjoyed a successful summer Down Under with the Lions, making four appearances, and is in line to head back to Southern Hemisphere this time around with England's tour of New Zealand.
But despite debate over what remains his best position for his country, the Englishman knows a return to full fitness with Tigers must come first.
"I am getting back to some match fitness and the only way to get there is by playing," Tuilagi told the Leicester Mercury. "I have to keep working at it and keep ticking over.
"It has been very frustrating to miss so much of the season - as it is for any sportsman who has an injury. You are on your own in rehab while the boys are out training. You just have to keep working hard.
"I like playing at inside-centre and outside-centre. There is not as much space at 12 but you get the ball in your hands a lot more.
"There is more space outside in the 13 shirt and if England pick me on the wing, I would be happy too.
"Whatever happens with England happens, it's Tigers first for me and we go from there."