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Author Topic: Surgery next month and my knee issue is a mystery  (Read 1055 times)

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Offline kaylachrist

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Surgery next month and my knee issue is a mystery
« on: May 26, 2018, 09:56:23 PM »
Hi folks! I have a mystery knee issue that I hoped someone on this thread could relate to or shed some light on. I'm having a diagnostic arthroscopy in June after many months of RICE and physical therapy failed and am hoping for an end to the pain I've lived with for half a year. It's almost like I had a knee sprain that never got better.

I'm a 30 year old female with no prior knee issues. In early January I noticed a small twinge in my right knee that got much worse over a few days with a lot of pain and stiffness that indicated I got some kind of injury. The major symptoms lasted several weeks, then settled down, but still recur (listed below). I don't recall a specific incident that caused it. I figured I got a sprain without realizing it and that it would eventually go away.

It's nearly six months later and my symptoms still come back even after lots of rest and physical therapy. X-rays look fine. My surgeon recommended to skip the expensive MRI since I'd be getting arthroscopic surgery anyway and he said diagnosing soft tissue injuries with an MRI wasn't very reliable. Now I kind of wish I'd gotten one anyway just to be thorough.

I go through all the tests for a meniscus tear just fine. However, due to the sudden onset of such intense pain and stiffness, I still wonder if a small meniscus tear is underlying this. Or perhaps it's a bone bruise -- but, wouldn't that have healed after half a year?

Here's a summary of my symptoms:

- My range of motion has always been fine, though I do get stiff a lot. The knee is stable with no indications of any torn ligaments or tendons.
- I get pain behind and below my kneecap, something seems to "pinch" with full extension when I walk. My patellar tendon is okay, so my guess is it's inflamed synovium and fat pad.
- Bending my knee without weight relieves some of the pain. Having it fully extended is painful especially when bearing weight.
- I get a squishy feeling and "creaking" behind my kneecap and sometimes in my entire joint when the swelling is bad.
- Walking and moving the joint feels better than standing still; long periods of weight-bearing results in stiffness and pain throughout the joint a couple of hours later.
- Sometimes when my knee is swollen I can feel something moving around and squishing in the joint when I put weight on it, almost like there's a sponge in there. If I'm not swollen though, it feels fine.
- If I move my knee slowly to full extension I feel a teeny-tiny pop inside the joint that isn't present in the other knee.
- I also have a non-painful snapping in the plica location, though it might be a secondary effect of my synovium being generally inflamed.

My surgeon sounds confident he'll see something in the joint that needs to be fixed yet doesn't think it's meniscus-related. He thinks it's plica, but due to the all-around swelling I get with weight bearing and the injury-like start to this whole ordeal I highly doubt that's 100% of the cause. I figure for something this sudden, painful, and long-standing, he HAS to find something out of whack in there, I just hope he finds and fixes everything for certain!

Does this sound familiar to anyone? Has anyone experienced a meniscus tear with similar symptoms but no major clicking? It's frustrating being in pain so often yet not knowing a definitive reason for it.
'18- RK, smoothed out patella cartilage damage

Offline James NZ

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Re: Surgery next month and my knee issue is a mystery
« Reply #1 on: May 27, 2018, 05:09:08 PM »
Hi, have a read of saving my knees ebook on Amazon before you decide on surgery. Once they're in there you never know what they might do and it's non reversible.
Natural rehab is the gold standard. Surgery is the last resort as if offers no guarantee that it won't make the problem worse.

Offline jackson7

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Re: Surgery next month and my knee issue is a mystery
« Reply #2 on: May 27, 2018, 06:24:53 PM »
I agree with James...surgery should be avoided if at all possible.  To get diagnostic arthroscopy, they'll ask you to sign a document giving them permission to "fix" anything they guess might be causing problems.  They can do anything they want...even antiquated or experimental procedures.  There's a very good chance you'll end up with your knee feeling worse than before the surgery...from which you may or may not ever recover.

I had diagnostic arthroscopy.  I'm glad they cut out the flap of torn meniscus (would rather they repaired it, but there seems to be a cut-off age for that)...I'm not happy they gave me a chondroplasty and  synovectomy. 

My knee has been mechanically effed up and painful since the surgery.  It felt like it was dislocating every day and my kneecap was catching so bad, I had about 20 deg ROM for about 6 months (when the dislocations or kneecap popped back into place, the pain was up near a 10).  I could barely walk for over a year...even rolling over in bed was a conscious effort to avoid pain. 

Only within the past couple months has the pain started to subside enough for me to be able to make an effort to start rebuilding my leg muscles.  I have to go through a complete stretching and self-massage routine every time I do anything involving legs...and walking still hurts...in all areas of my knee (not just the meniscectomy area).

Are you overweight?  What are your goals?...can they be achieved with your knee the way it currently is? 

If your goals are casual (short & slow walks, grocery shopping, biking, swimming, etc), can you get by with relatively low pain? 

If your goals are higher impact (long & fast walks, running, etc), can you manage with stretching and massage prior and icing after? 
12/2015: slow speed bicycle crash
1/16: many x-rays & 2 MRIs only show tendinosis
3/16: bone scan shows uptake in all compartments
8/16: cortisone jab (no effect)
3/17: diag scope (part med meniscectomy, med fem chondroplasty, full synovectomy)
4/18: Pain finally diminishing. 65% function.

Offline kaylachrist

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Re: Surgery next month and my knee issue is a mystery
« Reply #3 on: May 27, 2018, 08:41:01 PM »
Thank you for your replies. I'l address some of the questions you had...

I'm 5'1 and only weigh 100 pounds, so there really isn't any weight I can lose. :(

My goals are low-impact, though I'd like the option to be active in the future. I haven't even tried running on that joint because I can tell that it wouldn't go well. And even with low-impact daily activities I still have issues...if I try standing for a while with just my body weight, that still affects the joint, which made both me and my physical therapist think that something is definitely wrong in there.

My daily living is already pretty impacted with the pain levels going up and down so much. In a week I'm going on a vacation where I have to take an airplane and arranged for a wheelchair service to take me to my gate so I don't have to walk through the airport which would definitely aggravate the joint. To top it off I'm getting some persistent soreness in my quads and VMO muscles now too, maybe a sign of muscle wasting that's catching up to me, so I feel like I'm racing against the clock to preserve what's left of my lifestyle. :'(

I feel pretty good about the surgeon I'm working with, as he has over 30 years of experience doing surgery specializing in total knee replacement and sports-related injuries. I live in a college town too, so a higher than average number of patients are bound to be young folks with acute injuries that need to be patched up.
'18- RK, smoothed out patella cartilage damage

Offline Celina1989

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Re: Surgery next month and my knee issue is a mystery
« Reply #4 on: May 27, 2018, 09:58:00 PM »
Hi Kayla, I know this frustrations! I had sudden onset kneepain and it took months before after a diagnostic scope the issue was found and treated. I agree with that surgery should never be the first solution but you tried other options for months and since it is impairing daily live I totally understand your choice.

Like you I was hoping for that one person saying "o I have had exactly that and it was ...." I recognise some symptoms but since so many can be the issue in the knee. I hope your scope will get the mystery will be revealed and that your surgeon will be able to fix it.

In the Netherlands you can choose between complete anesthesia and "spinal". With that second choice you are awake and can use complete functions of your upper body (like talk to your surgeon). I think it will still be hard to decide at that point what is best. I just think a surgeon will  always do what they think is best.

Be careful on your holiday! Good you arranged a wheelchair. Make sure you got the right pre cautions. I took some cooling spray with me to work and course, its a good alternative if you don't have ice. I also used crutches. Don't forget to enjoy :)

I was able to do some stretch exercises before my surgery. There are many here on kneeguru. It is just good to keep m stretched and might help a bit against the stiffness too. I learned it the "hard" way after illiotibial band friction syndrom.

Also a good idea to prepare for surgery. There is an online course here on kneeguru. Best to prepare for the worst. It might also depend on your personal situation. I was lucky my dad could be there to help me around.

I hope it will all work out well for you!  ;)

Offline tensters

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Re: Surgery next month and my knee issue is a mystery
« Reply #5 on: May 28, 2018, 12:14:08 AM »
Bone bruises can take a year or more to recover from (mine took a year) depending on severity, location and I guess other individual factors. I believe there are studies showing healing in 8 months to 2 years. One odd thing I've noticed about them in my own experience and reading of others is there may be a delay between time of incident and seeing symptoms. In my case it was 1-2 weeks before I began experiencing severe symptoms of the bone bruise + osteochondral lesion after banging my knee into an A/C. I was walking around fine and forgot about it before sudden onset of sharp bone pain and muscles loss led to inability to walk or even sit. PT made it worse. My OS told me to try all the PT I want and that he would like me to do that before trying surgery - a recommendation I was totally on board with.  I told him I'll keep trying but I doubt I even did 4 sessions of PT in 2 tries because i would leave  in pain. I was told the PT would be gentle for contusion but it was anything but gentle at two top places in NYC.

Anyway, the injury was hell because it started problems with other areas of my body due to inability to use the injured knee leg including making a grade one spondylolistheses symptomatic and making my other knee, which had surgery years before, also painful. The worst of it was at the 6 month mark when I aggravated it going down steep escalator steps. Long story short I got over the injury by doing my own gentle rehab... some walks and stairs..some stretches, and by not aggravating the injury. I avoided pain killers (nsaids) as well after a time so it could heal better with better feedback. Took natural vitamin e and d. I was much improved by the year mark and could do normal activities and walk downstairs normally. Now almost 2 years post injury knee (and back) are great with zero issues. I'm very glad I did not opt for the knife (for knee or back) even though I was quite desperate after some months since who knows what he might have done - microfracture - or fix some incidental issue making everything worse.

Btw, xrays are mostly worthless since they don't really show soft tissue injuries or even some bone injuries. My xrays were perfect. When I went to see the OS, he strongly suspected a torn meniscus and would painfully demonstrate it for me. I suspected a bone bruise (I had experienced a torn meniscus in other knee many years ago and this was nothing like that - different pain and it was much worse) and said such. I then did an MRI which showed my menisci intact. It found a severe bone bruise on MFC (and Patella) with small osteochondral lesion.  The OS initially brushed away my suggestion of a bone bruise saying it should have healed by then (2 months post injury event). But when he saw the MRI, he told me it was going to take a long time to heal. He prescribed an offloader brace and PT both of which other than a few sessions I did not use as I mentioned above.

I did have arthroscopic surgery for a torn discoid meniscus injury after walking around on it for a few years about 18 years ago in my other knee and it worked out well. The OS was pretty sure what it was and he told me exactly what he would do (an MRI was inconclusive because I couldn't keep still) and what he would not do. I had a great OS (Riley Williams HSS) and he really knew what he was doing (he preserved as much meniscus as he could because studies showed too much meniscus loss could lead to later arthritis) and years later now my knee is pretty good (other than the recent hell it went through due to the other knee).

Even with my good experience, I would recommend thinking long before doing surgery. Maybe talk to the OS about what he will do if he finds this or that and make sure you are comfortable with that. I've read many stories of people being surprised that an OS did such and such during their arthroscopic procedure. Surprised at the invasiveness of it and also in some cases the arduous and extremely long rehab period required for it. To say nothing about whether it actually helped or made worse. Also, I think I would get an MRI before considering any surgery even though they are not perfect and sometimes miss things. My MRI read my knee well, much better than my OS's ability to determine the issue with his hands on testing since he was pretty convinced it was the meniscus and as he admitted, he was wrong. He happened to be very skilled with reading MRIs and had good confidence in them.

This is all based on my own experience and of course everyone and every knee and injury is different.  Anyway good luck with what you decide and I hope you are able to get your knee back to good shape soon.
« Last Edit: May 28, 2018, 03:15:50 AM by tensters »

Offline kaylachrist

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Re: Surgery next month and my knee issue is a mystery
« Reply #6 on: May 28, 2018, 03:42:58 AM »
Thanks for your responses! Reading about others' experiences has been very helpful. I see my doctor this Wednesday for a check-in and will see if there's a place that can get me in quickly for an MRI. If anything, it gives me something to hang onto for historical reasons and to show a different doctor if the issue doesn't resolve.

Celina1989 - Good to hear you had a positive outcome with your operation! That's encouraging. I'll use some of your tips and am arranging for a few easy weeks post-surgery to help with recovery.

tensters - I can definitely relate to having issues with your other muscles as the result of a bad knee; I've fought off lower back and hamstring pains for the past couple of months, not to mention just trying to find a comfortable position to sleep! I'm curious -- with your bone bruise, did you have recurrent stiffness or effusion in that knee?
'18- RK, smoothed out patella cartilage damage

Offline tensters

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Re: Surgery next month and my knee issue is a mystery
« Reply #7 on: May 28, 2018, 04:27:07 AM »
After the first few few months, I had good range of motion in the knee. I actually would work on both knees since the bone bruise knee was killing my other knee (and back). I worked on it daily. So I had full extension pretty early and flexion took a little longer but I soon had that. But this was in a laying down or sitting position on a bed. While standing with muscles activated especially after walking just a little my knee would go into a limped position with my knee flexed. It took quite a while for me to be able to extend my knee in motion just walking around. As that got better there would be good and bad days. It was on the good days that I had to be really careful.

I had very little swelling after the first month or two that I recall. Though I noticed heat like from a hot bath would make my knee go nuts. Epson salt baths were the worst. So I strictly avoided heat. The inside of my knee felt weird and it would feel different day to day. Sometimes it felt like it was full of broken rocks. Other times it felt like there was a big pressure beneath my knee cap and that something was torn and on fire. I remember it felt like there was a funny bone in my knee that had been whacked hard. Sleeping was very difficult because there was no good position. It took a very long time for this to improve. I remember I had improved a lot by the 6 month mark.. much less pain and I could walk and go downstairs (I live in 3 story walk up).. and I became optimistic..and then I aggravated it like I mentioned going down steep escalator steps which was totally avoidable. It set me back to the beginning which surprised me. It was pretty terrible. At its worst I could not stand or sit without a lot of pain. I spent a lot of time in a side lying fetal position. I  also had the spondylolisthesis xrayed  because i was afraid all the limping and struggling and odd muscle usage could cause it to slip more and I was getting what felt like nerve pain. That was scary.

Now its like nothing ever happened and the knee (and back and other knee) are really good.
« Last Edit: May 28, 2018, 06:15:54 PM by tensters »

Offline youngbodyoldjoints

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Re: Surgery next month and my knee issue is a mystery
« Reply #8 on: May 29, 2018, 06:48:37 PM »
Hi Kayla-
I definitely second getting an MRI. It's always better to go into surgery with as much information as possible. I personally had injuries including a complete ACL tear and severely torn meniscus that didn't show up on a physical exam and knee maneuvers. It only showed up on the MRI that I insisted on having. I'm honestly pretty surprised that your surgeon wanted to jump into surgery without one- I would consider getting the MRI, getting a disc with your images (you can ask for one at the time of the MRI), and getting a second opinion. As others have said here, getting surgery can be a huge, difficult undertaking. Getting the MRI and another opinion will help you get more information. Best of luck!!
2010- L knee ACL recon
2011- L knee ACL recon
2012- L knee scope
2014- L knee scope
2016- L hip scope
2017- R knee PCL recon
2018- L lower leg peroneal nerve release
2018- L knee lysis of adhesions

Offline LisaWilliams38

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Re: Surgery next month and my knee issue is a mystery
« Reply #9 on: May 29, 2018, 10:02:17 PM »
Hi Kayla,
First off, I'm sorry you are dealing with such pain and frustration, and I REALLY hope you see this before your next appointment.  It's hard enough to make a decision, but especially so when you feel like some of the puzzle pieces are missing. I won't argue with any of the advice you've been given. It's from people who have been through A LOT. I will share my honest thoughts and experiences though, and maybe it will help you a little.  ;) Also, you "sound" as if you're in the US, so I hope I'm not making an incorrect assumption or saying things you know are not practical for wherever you reside. I know we all have limitations based on locale.

1) I'm almost 46 and have had 10 knee surgeries--the last was 2 wks ago. My issues began at 26 and are considered to be genetic/chromosomal in origin, as nothing else explains the rapid, sudden meniscus tears that began for no apparent reason,  then the extreme articular damage/erosions that began at age 37.  I have no good stories! I was the typical athletic kid playing 1-2 sports a year, I ran occasionally and climbed trees, and I stayed active with friends/weight-lifting in my 20's---my weight was never an issue and I've always been extremely fit/active/lean.

2) I vote for getting the MRI before you opt for surgery. Knowledge is power, and I think you've fought the good fight with PT and RICE. I think you need whatever extra info you can get in order to make a decision YOU can live with.

3) As for MRIs though---I have a love/hate relationship with them. They have detected many of my meniscus tears, but they have also missed quite a few (3 pretty severe ones in fact----as  by my surgeon 2 weeks ago. ;D ) I don't know if age/degeneration,scar tissue has anything to do with it, but my MRIs for meniscus tears were much more accurate when I was younger and before my knees had had much work done on them. I also scar (create adhesions) horribly, so in fairness, my images may not be as accurate as some due to obscuring of the knee structures.

Also, my OS has a 50/50 view on MRIs. He says it only gives 50% of the story; another 30-40%  comes from the in-office exam. For me, that last 10% is a guess. His "guess" to go ahead and operate has saved my right knee from a TKR. I almost just suffered  too long, thinking it can't be THAT bad THIS soon, right??!! :(  Luckily, he operated in time to do an ACI procedure (2 part surgery) that salvaged the joint, though the year-long rehab sucked. Even with this last Microfracture/Bioacartilage surgery on the other "better" knee, the MRI said the articular cartilage defect (think "pothole" the size of a half dollar) was on the end of my femur. It wasn't. It was on top of my tibia. :) Same fix and rehab---but yeah, poor imaging, to say the least, because it also didn't see the 3 severe meniscus tears I mentioned previously. ::) .
 
4) I do not go in for the "avoid surgery if at all possible" philosophy. We tend to hear loads of bad stories/outcomes online and just fewer of the good ones, if you KWIM?! If your life is being impacted  to the point your work, vacationing and your social life is impacted, plus being in pain daily???? Yeah---you've put up the good fight and no one should fault you for having an exploratory knee surgery.

5) Granted, to be fair, if I could go back in time, I'd have skipped #2 and #4. I was trying to prevent further misery because of experiences with #1 and #3. I now know I should have tried more PT and rest, and I likely could have slowed down the OA in both knees. Live and learn.  :P

6) I made some comments below on your exact symptoms. I hope the formatting comes through and will clean it up if need be.

A) My range of motion has always been fine, though I do get stiff a lot. The knee is stable with no indications of any torn ligaments or tendons. This suggests to me that you have chronic inflammation that never goes away. SOMETHING must be causing it.
B)  I get pain behind and below my kneecap, something seems to "pinch" with full extension when I walk. My patellar tendon is okay, so my guess is it's inflamed synovium and fat pad. This is similar to  multiple times  I've had loose pieces of torn menisci floating around, getting caught in my joint.  This will continue to cause inflammation, and no PT can change that.
C)  Bending my knee without weight relieves some of the pain. Having it fully extended is painful especially when bearing weight.-This again suggests you have loose pieces of menisci or something getting caught in your joint spaces. Again, this will continue to cause inflammation.
D) I get a squishy feeling and "creaking" behind my kneecap and sometimes in my entire joint when the swelling is bad. For me, this was a major loose body moving around in my knee. The worse the swelling becomes, the worse the pain/grinding behind my kneecap. The longer I waited, the more "floaties" I had, and the swelling/catching/grinding worsened quickly. It will damage other joint surfaces if left too long (been there, done that, more than once!!  ??? )
E) Walking and moving the joint feels better than standing still; long periods of weight-bearing results in stiffness and pain throughout the joint a couple of hours later. For me, this has been the progression of my OA throughout  20 yrs. My surgeon says an injured knee always feels better moving than standing still, due to distribution of your body weight while moving. Moving lets other parts of your body absorb some of the weight impact. Standing still, in his words, is THE WORST for pain. He pushed me years ago to give up teaching my 4-hr night classes 1-2X times a week after my son was born. There was just no way to sit the entire time, nor move the entire time--after my 9th surgery in 2016, I unofficially retired from teaching stopped working while  trying to insure I can walk until I'm 50 ((when we replace the right knee!!)  :-\ Besides, my son is 11, and he needs a chauffer most days. I don't have to work, and my husband and I agree walking is more important. :) They both have severe food allergies, and I cook A LOT. I NEED my knees. Not working lets me spread out how much I'm on my feet most days while still fitting in walking, weights, stretching, and just being active with my son & husband.
F)  Sometimes when my knee is swollen I can feel something moving around and squishing in the joint when I put weight on it, almost like there's a sponge in there. If I'm not swollen though, it feels fine. Personally, all of my meniscus tears felt like "walking on a shifting sponge"--even when it first tore. I've had 15+ meniscal tears over the years. Only surgery 2 and 4 involved tears that were asymptomatic after the initial 2-4 wks from the time of tearing--thus my wishing I had waited on surgery until I was desperate.
G)  If I move my knee slowly to full extension I feel a teeny-tiny pop inside the joint that isn't present in the other knee. Sorry girl---I'd bet LOTS of money  something is getting caught/stuck in your joint. This is bad. Think of a pebble or pinball, rolling around, bumping/grinding against the other joint surfaces. This is why I've had so many surgeries now. Every 2-3 yrs, I get loose bodies from meniscus tears or articular cartilage potholes forming on the ends of my femur and tibia---these loose pieces are doing massive damage to my other articular cartilage surfaces, speeding me towards knee replacements. If we can stay on top of it, we can slow down the deterioration, though it's a given we CANNOT stop it completely. 
H) I also have a non-painful snapping in the plica location, though it might be a secondary effect of my synovium being generally inflamed. I have no thoughts on this one. I've never been given a good explanation for plicas and plica injuries.   ;D
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I) I'm getting some persistent soreness in my quads and VMO muscles now too, maybe a sign of muscle wasting that's catching up to me, so I feel like I'm racing against the clock to preserve what's left of my lifestyle-----this was a completely new symptom for me over the last 3 months, and it worsened as my swelling increased. I also thought my Quad and VMO area in articular was just getting weaker. I saw my usual PT and asked his opinion, as I was trying to decide whether t go through with this last surgery. He told me once things get THAT inflamed, the inflammation infiltrates the quad area and starts interfering with how the muscle fibers "fire." He said it will steadily increase as  the pain/inflammation worsens. He was right. The last 5 days before my procedure, my VMO and other lower parts of my quad JUST WOULDN'T FUNCTION properly and hurt to the touch. :(   Now that I know how bad the tibial "pothole" was, he said it's a miracle I worked out as long as I did leading up to the surgery...and it helped that he had turned me into a lower body beast over the last 2 yrs, trying to ward off more problems. Apparently I was just lucky that I had a great Quad/VMO to begin with in Feb. when the pain kicked in so much. 

LASTLY, I'm not a know-it-all or expert on everything knees. I've just had lots of good and bad experiences and wouldn't wish our ups/downs on anyone. It's hard to know who to trust and what to believe when it's YOUR body and money on the line. I've always been blessed with good insurance and a great  husband who has weathered this with me, while still joking about it. I hope the best for you and whatever you decide. Please keep us updated if you'd like. I love a good mystery.  :D

---Lisa
« Last Edit: May 30, 2018, 01:39:38 AM by LisaWilliams38 »
'98 R plica
'99 L resect discoid meniscus
'01 L  meniscus tear
'02 R  meniscus tear
'10, R meniscus tears, Bursectomy
'13, R 3 meniscus tears, Grd 3 Biocartilage fil
'15 R Oct-ACI harvest,
'15 R Dec-ACI implant
'16 R Mar-lysis of adhesions
'16 R Mar-MUA
'18 L 3 menis tears, Grade 4 Biocartilage fill

Offline kaylachrist

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Re: Surgery next month and my knee issue is a mystery
« Reply #10 on: May 31, 2018, 02:22:27 AM »
Hi LisaWilliams38, thank you for your very thorough and thoughtful reply, and I hope your recent surgery went well! As I read your responses over I nodded my head many times at how often the things you described matched what I am experiencing too, though I didn't write it my original post. And yep, I'm in the U.S., your assumption is correct. :)

After reading your descriptions I'd bet lots of money that a meniscus tear is a good portion of the problem too. And the experience you had with your quad/VMO muscles sounds like what's happening to me also. I'm doing my PT exercises daily to try to keep them active and strong, but even then I can tell my right side (the injured side) is softer and smaller than the left now, so let's hope they hold out another few weeks until surgery!

I'll definitely keep this thread updated as new developments happen. I like a good mystery too, and if anything it might help someone else down the line who has similar issues and is looking for answers.
'18- RK, smoothed out patella cartilage damage

Offline frustrated101

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Re: Surgery next month and my knee issue is a mystery
« Reply #11 on: June 13, 2018, 04:47:31 PM »
Yea surgeons are like barbers.  You ask them for something, and then they do whatever they want.  With hair, it grows back.  With your knee, who knows.

I went in for a simple lateral release.  Surgeon did lateral release, medial release, air, fat pad trim.  I could run before surgery, now I can't walk down steps. 

Offline Grieves

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Re: Surgery next month and my knee issue is a mystery
« Reply #12 on: June 16, 2018, 01:37:14 PM »
You guys are making a lot of sense. This is my worst fear as well. I would try to get a few different opinions and try everything I could before going under the knife...

Offline lilone

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Re: Surgery next month and my knee issue is a mystery
« Reply #13 on: June 17, 2018, 12:09:39 AM »
Is it possible to have an arthroscopy and not sign the "do anything" consent? I'd like for them to go in and take a look and also clear any debris but I would like to specifically say "You may NOT do a lateral release". Do I have that right, as a patient?

To the OP, many of your symptoms sound like my original symptoms associated with chondromalacia patella. Early stages don't show up well on a MRI which is unfortunate. 8 years ago I had one and was told I just had bone bruising. Now, at 40, I have advanced arthritis and will need a new knee as soon as they consider me old enough. I can't help but feel that if they had explored further 8 years ago, I would have done whatever OT would help me fix the problem (which in my case is Troclear Dysplasia so I would need to really work my quads and glutes).

Offline kaylachrist

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Re: Surgery next month and my knee issue is a mystery
« Reply #14 on: June 17, 2018, 03:52:46 AM »
Hi guys,

My operation is only 5 days away now, so I thought I'd post an update. I learned something over the past couple of weeks that I'll be sure to mention to the surgeon.

I found that wearing shoes with a bit of a heel really helped relieve the pinching below my patella when I stood and walked. I thought that was odd. I wasn't sure why at first, but then realized they were probably preventing my knees from moving backward to bring about the dreading pinching. I started wondering if the pinching I'm experiencing is due to a hyperextension issue where my kneecap is slipping backwards under my body weight, perhaps due to a stretched-out or partially torn ligament somewhere and my weak quads. If so, hopefully it's something the surgeon will be able to see and diagnose while he's in there. I wouldn't be surprised if I have several issues going on at once, seems a lot of knee injuries end up that way.

Anyone else experienced a pinch at the front of their knee if they're hyperextended or find that heels in their shoes help with their knee pain?
« Last Edit: June 17, 2018, 04:15:26 AM by kaylachrist »
'18- RK, smoothed out patella cartilage damage















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