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Author Topic: Cycling tracking problem - concequences of pushing through pain.  (Read 818 times)

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Offline AK_Eric

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Hello there, this is my first post to this forum. Iím writing to explain my situation and see if anyone has had similar experiences or can give any words of wisdom..  Basically Iím 28 years old and an endurance mountain biker. I used to race in 100+ mile events and Iíve done a few long distance mtb touring trips in other parts of the world.  About 5 years ago I had patellar femoral pain along the bottom of my knee cap. I went to a good PT and they treated me for the usual lateral tracking problem of having tight IT bands, and a weak Vastus medialias muscle.  The pain slowly went away and I had a bike fit done where cant was added to my cycling shoes to correct for a slight outward angle my right foot has, and to engage the VMO muscle more.  So time ticked by and I could ride hard again after a while. Sometimes some pain would come but it never would lay me up, usually Iíd have to stop pedaling, stretch and eventually it would go away.

So I moved to Alaska, three years ago, last fall during a trail run my knee got really inflamed in the middle of the night and it felt like somebody hit it with a hammer.  I saw another PT in town because it felt like I really did something bad, but he confirmed that is was still a tracking problem like before, so I rehabbed it over a month or soÖ  Then winter comes along, Iím feeling strong and I set off to train for a really hardcore race on the Iditarod trail -350 miles.  All winter long I trained really without any problems. After 8 hours or so I would start to feel some pain in my knee like things were getting tight and Iíd stretch and Iíd be able to work through it and it would go away.  So the race comes along and sure enough after 3 days of moving I napped for 3 hours in a warm shelter and woke up in bad pain could barely bend my leg - Massive inflammation.  Options for evac were limited and I (wrongly) decided to try to make it to the finish 90 miles away after taking a large dose of iduprophrin.  It was the most grueling day of my life. 

Now 4 months later Iím living with that decision as my knee is still not feeling very well.  I cant cycle at all and itís the beautiful Alaskan summer!  I found a great Dr. that has been doing Active release techniques on me to get the muscles moving like they should and stretched out.  He basically diagnosed me with the opposite tracking problem, that my medial muscle is stronger and tighter than the lateral side, so its tracking to opposite direction that previously diagnosed. I donít have any of the crunchy symptoms of chondromalacia but I have a gut feeling I messed up some cartridge.  My knee never feels quite right and Iím wondering if I should get some imagery done like X-rays or an MRIÖ  Anyone else been stupid enough to push through the pain with an injured knee?  Iím taking this pretty rough since my heart and soul thrives from doing extended trips outside and I feel like Iíve really messed up my ability to do what I love due to my short sightedness.   If you made it this far thanks for reading  

Offline Nettan

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Re: Cycling tracking problem - concequences of pushing through pain.
« Reply #1 on: June 30, 2005, 06:30:58 AM »
So you have never done any x-rays or Mri ? have the doc said something about your cartilage or have you asked about that ? Say that you are concerned and see what your doc thinks.

Hugs Nettan  8)
Surgery 6 times left knee torn meniscus, RSDS,chondromalacia, nervdamage cause constant nervpain,chronic inflamm.
Spinaldamage wheeler 100%.
Right knee damaged aug-06, use brace surgery 4/9-07.LCL tear.

Offline blackbeltgirl

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Re: Cycling tracking problem - concequences of pushing through pain.
« Reply #2 on: June 30, 2005, 02:16:39 PM »
First of all, while most of us are not endurance athletes, most of us have pushed through the pain, and second-guessed the decision later.  So you're definitely not alone in that. 

You mention that you've seen 2 PTs and a doctor.  But what kind of doctor?  Have you seen an orthopedist?  One who specializes in knees?  The VERY FIRST THING an orthopedist will do, at your first visit, is take you into x-ray.  AT least that's my experience, and I  believe many here would concur.  A GP cannot diagnose and treat your knee like a good OS can.

So find yourself a good OS, who specializes in knees, and in your case, is part of a sports medicine practice.  Sports medicine physicians work very hard to get their patients back to training for their chosen activities.  (This does not mean other OS's don't.)  Until you get a proper diagnosis (which will probably require x-rays, mri, and a thorough physical examination) there is no way to know what's wrong, how to treat it, and if you will able to ride another 350 mile course.

Good luck.
Jess
ACI was supposed to be 2/21/06.  On 6/29/06 Insurance co said have another scope, and if it still looks good, they'll ok the ACI.
Microfracture Dec 7, 2004
   3cm x 6cm lesion, LFC; 3cm x 1cm lesion, trochlear groove; lateral tibial plateau lesion
2nd degree black belt, tae kwon do (had to stop)

Offline AK_Eric

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Re: Cycling tracking problem - concequences of pushing through pain.
« Reply #3 on: June 30, 2005, 06:06:41 PM »
hi again, I left out a few details as it was getting quite long, So the Dr. I'm seeing now is actually trained as a chairopractor who specializes in soft tissue injuries and works alot with knees.  He's been far and above better than any of the other highly recommended PT's I've seen.  But I think the orthopedic route is the next step from here, more probably to find out what I'm really up against.
Thanks

Offline Nettan

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Re: Cycling tracking problem - concequences of pushing through pain.
« Reply #4 on: June 30, 2005, 06:11:10 PM »
Then you really should go see a OS specialized on knees and get things sorted out.
Wish you good luck !!

Hugs Nettan  8)
Surgery 6 times left knee torn meniscus, RSDS,chondromalacia, nervdamage cause constant nervpain,chronic inflamm.
Spinaldamage wheeler 100%.
Right knee damaged aug-06, use brace surgery 4/9-07.LCL tear.

Offline JenSinclair

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Re: Cycling tracking problem - concequences of pushing through pain.
« Reply #5 on: June 30, 2005, 06:36:37 PM »
I agree with Nettan (I always do!).  Hie thee to a good knee specialist OS.  Try to see a sports med person...

Welcome to the forums...and let us know how you get on!

Peace,
Jen
LR/TTT 3 August 2006, RK
LR/TTT 16 June 2005, LK
CPMs are evil.