The LIBRARY => NOTES - Your success stories => Topic started by: igor on July 17, 2005, 10:50:09 PM

Title: 1 year after partial meniscectomy
Post by: igor on July 17, 2005, 10:50:09 PM
Hello everyone,

I was thinking for a while about posting my story here as a 'success'. I do worry about jinxing it - with the active lifestyle I lead (breakdancer and a ton of other things), the risks are high for the injury to come back to haunt me later on in life. However, so far I have little to complain about, and I want to give back to this wonderful community by encouraging some of the new members to keep on trying.

It all started about a year ago - I was 19. During a dance practice (if a bboy reads this - i was doing an "airbaby") I noticed that my right knee had a big watery bump on it. I do not know exactly when I got it, but it freaked me out. My family doctor said that it's probably a tear in the cartilage and told me to lay off dancing for a while, so it heals up (now that I think of it, she should have told me to go for an MRI or something, cartilage doesnt really heal... ). I did exactly that, and the bump was gone in a couple of weeks. I started dancing again, and a few weeks later, during a practice I was doing what is considered a really harmless, basic move (6-step) when I suddenly felt a tearing sensation in my knee and dropped to the ground, unable to straighten my leg. At first I thought that my knee was dislocated and started asking random people if they know how to 'pop' it back into its socket. Thankfully noone volunteered, or I'd have even more damage.

I will spare you the nightmare story of being on crutches for over a month waiting for the surgery. Being an active person, it's a torture, thankfully I could still work (I'm a programmer). The surgeon said that the 'inside' part of my right knee meniscus was torn in half, and one of the halves was stuck in my joint blocking it from moving.

After the surgery, being able to straighten my leg felt like magic. I got a bit overly enthusiastic and started walking the same night, which made my fresh scars bleed excessively (do yourself a favour and chill out/RICE for a day or two). The pain was bearable, and I started planning my recovery. Firstly, I signed up for physiotherapy (3 times a week for 1 month), even though my surgeon considers it a "waste". I was doing a variety of knee exercises to strengthen the right leg, which was really weak. I got lucky with my therapist - he was able to answer a lot of recovery-related questions.

One of his tips was getting on glucosamine/chondroitine. I take it every day and maybe it had something to do with my recovery.

Once the PT was over, I started attending a gym (with a focus on leg exercise), jogging twice a week and getting back to my dancing. Doing leg exercises at the gym was sometimes painful, but I was able to get my leg to a pre-injury condition. Running was also kind painful the first few times (more of an ache), plus I had my knee lock quite often. After a month of this, I pretty much felt no pain in my knees and the locking was gone. I want to emphasize here, that at no times did I have SHARP pain during exercise, so if you do get that, be careful and talk to a professional.

With dancing I had a different problem - fear of screwing up and hurting myself again. But my love for it is too great to give it up, so I just took it one step at a time...

So, a year later, where am I at?

In April, 8 months after the surgery, I ran a 10k marathon in 56 minutes, my first time ever (and thus my fastest). I am way better at dancing than I was before I got injured, thanks to hours and hours of practice. The only reminder of my injury is four scars and an ache I get after especially tiring days (ie. 4-5 hours of soccer or volleyball). This ache also manifests itself after I stretch too much. Other than that, I'm fully recovered and not having half of my interior meniscus isn't going to hold me back... I still got the other half!

Good luck to all of you!


Title: Re: 1 year after partial meniscectomy
Post by: MsShel330 on August 09, 2005, 04:04:59 AM
That's great news, Igor. I hope your knee continues to hold up and that you can keep dancing.   :)