The WAITING ROOM => GENERAL KNEE QUESTIONS and comments (good for new threads) => Topic started by: angel24 on November 06, 2008, 12:33:45 AM

Title: Knee "giving way"
Post by: angel24 on November 06, 2008, 12:33:45 AM
About 12 years ago I fell in the tub. My leg went under me and I waited a while but was able to get up and get out of the tub. I walked (very gingerly) on it and determined that it was not broken so did nothing about it. Exactly a week later I was bowling and my right knee gave way and I fell and broke my wrist. Nothing was done about my knee but my wrist was casted.
I had no more trouble with my knee until 2 yrs ago. I was getting into the car and it felt like I had been hit across the back of the knee with a 2x4. It hurt but eventually was ok. Then last summer I was going down some steps to the lower level of an outdoor shopping plaza when this "like a bang and a slipping pain" happened again. I limped to the car and had to do the R.I.C.E. therapy for a couple of days. Two months later I was walking down a slightly sloped lawn to the car and again this horrible "bang and slip pain". This time I called the doc and started physio therapy.
It has been going good. Physio therapist feels muscles are getting stronger surrounding the area. I had exrays taken...nothing out of the ordinary except a bit of deterioration due to arthritis and a touch of osteoporosis. It has been good for 2 months and I was gaining confidence and 2 days ago I was going down front steps and again....same thing happened. This time I was devistated....I was sure I would not feel this horrible feeling again. This time my whole body seemed to go into some sort of shock and trauma. I felt absolutely sick all over.
NOW I am afraid to leave the house...let alone go down the stairs. Luckily we have no stairs IN the house...just 2 small steps going down the front. I am scared, paranoid....I feel my quality of life is compromised. I am a basket case.
It also feels like something is floating around in my little bits of something....don't know what. It is always the right knee. Is there a name for this??? Has anyone ever had this happen to them. What is the solution. I do my excercises faithfully 2x per day (knee strengthening) and go to therapy 2x per week. I am doing all the right stuff......or so I thought. Please someone help me or enlighten me.....thank you.
Title: Re: Knee "giving way"
Post by: jathib on November 06, 2008, 02:37:34 PM
Why haven't you been to an orthopedic surgeon and gotten an MRI? After 12 years I'd say it's time. You're wasting your time with physical therapy.
Title: Re: Knee "giving way"
Post by: luckygrandma6 on November 06, 2008, 04:34:48 PM
I agree with jathib, Physiotherapy is not the answer. This was happening to my right knee and I was sent to therapy for a year. I would be in the grocery store and always without warning my knee would go off and under me and thank goodness I was holding onto a cart. I would suddenly yelp and everyone looked at me as if I was nuts. Back when I was going through this they didn't do MRI's like they do now, and so finally my OS did an arthroscopy. It turns out that my tendons were stretched and he tightened them up, it was six months recovering from this but it has never happened since. Also the thing rattling around could be a piece of cartlidage that has torn. It could be a couple things but the longer you wait to see a OS the more could be wrong and a simple procedure could turn into something more complicated.
Title: Re: Knee "giving way"
Post by: angel24 on November 06, 2008, 05:54:01 PM
Hi Jathib and Luckygrandma: I called the OS this morning and they are going to get back to me. Because everything seemed "normal and ok" last Wed when I did go and see him....and then I had another "incident" the nurse is going to talk to him and get back to me. I told her that I think we should re-address this situation and that I felt an MRI was in the future for me.
I am terrified of being put to sleep and surgery...go figure ! What is involved in the arthroscopy...can you tell me what it was like and what to expect Luckygrandma?
It is so re-assuring to know that someone else has experienced this "weird phenomenon" that I have been going through. So often when these things happen you feel like you are so alone and that you are the "only one in the world" that is or has had this happen to them.
I am still shaken and shaking from the trauma on Monday. Like I said in my original message, this was "the big one" totally threw my body into some sort of shock. I feel soooooo traumatized.....I might as well have been hit from behind by a truck....that is how I am feeling at this particular moment.
Having said all that, I will add that I am a "doer" and I know I MUST get to the bottom of this in order to get back my life...I am otherwise very active...not so much physically active as I have 5 kinds of arthritis and fibromyalgia thrown in for good measure. We also still are foster parents to newborn babies who come into care of the Children's Services, so I am not unable to do that....I can walk etc and look after things around the house but this is a setback and it has to be dealt with and it will be if I have my way.
Any more info you can provide me with would be great. Another question.......after the arthroscopy....what is the likelihood of that ever happening again?? I hope !!!!!
Thanks again ladies....god bless and hope to hear from you again
Title: Re: Knee "giving way"
Post by: luckygrandma6 on November 06, 2008, 06:42:10 PM
Like I said, I never had the incident occur again once I had the problem corrected, which was stretched ligaments. Picture a rubber band. If you keep stretching it, it loses it's shape and eventually it takes wrapping it around more and more to get the same tightmness. Poor example. This particular operation was probably over 20 years ago.
As far as how does an arthroscopy feel. You don't feel anything. You are put to sleep and it's over before you know it. I'll tell you one thing, I would take an arthroscopy any day to having surgery where there is an incision. The recovery time is much quicker. I trully don't feel you should be in the kind of pain you describe 5 weeks later. YOu might have swelling and stiffness when you overdo it, but certainly you should feel better each day.
Title: Re: Knee "giving way"
Post by: jathib on November 06, 2008, 08:02:51 PM
Arthroscopic surgery experiences vary widely depending on what gets done, your tolerance for pain, etc. Without knowing what's wrong with your knee there's really no way to even predict the outcome. From the sounds of it your ACL is gone. Repairing one of those is a big surgery with a long recovery. It also has a good chance of success. I had mine done 18 years ago with open surgery and haven't had stability problems since. But the "giving way" that you describe is probably causing more damage to your knee every time it happens. That's how I tore my meniscus which was a far more devastating injury in the end. The result of that was four arthroscopic surgeries and a partial knee replacement. If your ACL is torn you should have it fixed. After 12 years of "giving way" you've more than likely done a lot more damage to your knee.

As far as scopes go, I've had four of them and three open surgeries. Scopes do not compare to an open surgery in terms of pain and recovery. I find the scopes to be pretty minor surgeries in comparison. The pain will probably be less than what you experience when you fall. The surgery itself is easy. You fall asleep and wake up what seems like seconds later and it's done.
Title: Re: Knee "giving way"
Post by: angel24 on November 07, 2008, 03:25:00 AM
Thank you all so much for your replies and your info. Luckily I only fell the one time....12 yrs ago....and the xray I had done last month show no damage to the hopefully I can escape with a scope.
I am just feeling so paranoid at the moment...can't shake the feeling. Don't want to leave the house because I know there are 2 little steps at the front of my door...isn't that nuts ?
The "slipping" incident does not usually occur in close succession anyway so it may not happen for a while or before I get a scope or whatever....but the fact it DID happen after all my hard work.....really did a number on me.
Should I still be doing my knee strengthening excercises regardless.....I DID do them yesterday and it did hurt but the PT said to do them regardless....hope he is right !!
I called OS today and he is going to get back to me tomorrow (friday) and hopefully he will order an MRI and get things going for me.
Will let y'all know what is happening.  Thanks again, God bless !!