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Author Topic: I have had an improvement!!  (Read 16994 times)

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Offline kathat

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Re: I have had an improvement!!
« Reply #15 on: October 16, 2007, 03:27:23 PM »
Hey Tanya,
Who was it that said "for every action there is an equal and opposite reaction"? Well you've proven that! You have the good action of VMO firing, and the bad (opposite) reaction of PAIN. Maybe I won't mention VMOs at physio this week  :-\ Doesn't sound fun.

I know all about useless PTs. The one I went to when I was younger did lots of passive stretches (patellar mobs maybe?) and taped the joint, and told me to concentrate on contracting my VMOs whenever I thought of it (not much at that age!). I had no real feedback from the physio (or the OS for that matter). I assumed that when the pain went I had been "cured". My PT now is much better. I have several different exercises and I know what they all do, and I've had useful feedback.

I'm not overly worried about my VMOs. I realise that any contraction is useful, but I also realise that it's going to be a long road to restoring them - I feel pooped just thinking about it!! :P

Hope your pain settles. Will keep my fingers crossed for continued, and less painful, VMO reawakening for you.

Kathy

Offline tanyap

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Re: I have had an improvement!!
« Reply #16 on: October 16, 2007, 03:58:54 PM »
Hi Kathy,
I feel pooped thinking about my rehab AND your rehab!!!

One thing I keep wondering - if all this rehab actually works, and I dont need to spend so long at it some far away day in the future - what the hell am I gonna do to fill the time then!!!!!

Oh Kathy - I meant to tell you my VMO on my good leg is HUGE now from all the squats - but there was no pain involved on that side :)

I got my GP to prescribe me anti-inflammatory cream - use it at night when Im very sore - its been helpful for The Awakening.....
Tanya
1986 - recurrent dislocations of right patella began
1988 - Modified Hauser Procedure
1991 - dislocations started again
2005 to 2007 - 150 dislocations in 2 years - OUCH!!!
June 2007 - new OS, new physio
Oct 2007 - VMO woke up
Mar 2008 - big quads, still dislocating
Apr 2008 - next OS app

Offline kathat

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Re: I have had an improvement!!
« Reply #17 on: October 16, 2007, 04:29:16 PM »
"The Awakening"! Very appropriate! I'll have to keep the anti-inflammatory cream in mind, just in case. All these little tips might come in useful one day. At least they don't take up room like many of the other things I hoard "just in case"!!

I don't know how I fit rehab into my life - especially seeing as I have to repeat everything twice (once for the left, once for the right). I have so much stuff to do piled up that I'll have years worth of things to do by the time I finish all my rehab...if ever. Right now I feel as if I will get through this lot of rehab and it'll be time for more surgery...and more rehab!!!

You must look very lopsided with that huge VMO next to the nothing one. At least my knees are matching - yay, I can go out in public looking decent  ;D Actually, I've given up caring about how I look. I just want to be comfy. Bought new shoes this week to make myself feel better. Wow they're good. Lots of cushioning, and support for my overpronating feet. Of course they're trainers and look real sexy (NOT) but WHO CARES. I'm comfy  8) (The "new shoe glare" is a bit much though!).

Whoops, it's nearly 1am here. Am too busy reading up on everyone's knee stories. Time has flown. Think I'd better get to bed or I'll never get up in time to take the kids to school.

Goodnight.

Kathy

Offline tanyap

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Re: I have had an improvement!!
« Reply #18 on: October 17, 2007, 08:36:55 PM »
Its funny you mention the lopsided thing, i was outside a shop with big glass windows today and I noticed that I DO LOOK LOPSIDED!!!!
hahahahaha!!!

like the new shoe story - im in trainers for the past 2 years, I even wore them with dresses away, I glued little glittery sequins to a black pair for dressy usage :)

I had a lot of pain today - my knee was hurting while driving which is unusual - but I dont mind, its just Awakening pain :)
1986 - recurrent dislocations of right patella began
1988 - Modified Hauser Procedure
1991 - dislocations started again
2005 to 2007 - 150 dislocations in 2 years - OUCH!!!
June 2007 - new OS, new physio
Oct 2007 - VMO woke up
Mar 2008 - big quads, still dislocating
Apr 2008 - next OS app

Offline kathat

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Re: I have had an improvement!!
« Reply #19 on: October 17, 2007, 11:59:58 PM »
Love the image that comes to mind - you in your sparkly trainers, dress and lopsided legs admiring yourself in a shop window!!! Sorry, my 9 year old daughter does the shop window thing and the way she looks is hilarious. She primps and preens, tossing her hair and tilting her head from side to side - my imagination automatically has you doing the same!!!!  ;D Actually, it doesn't take much to switch to me, with my sticky-up hair (just had it cut and bits of it keep trying to stick straight up), my glow-in-the-dark (well, almost) trainers, and the faded navy shorts I plan to wear to physio today with knobbly knees (red scars and all) and lilly-white legs showing (just coming out of winter here). Gross!  :P

I still manage to wear my "nice" shoes out, but my idea of nice shoes isn't fancy. I usually wear pants (my knees ache if they get cool - even most of my shorts still cover my knees) so I have a half decent pair of slip on black "work shoe" type shoes that are reasonably cushioned. And I have a pair of hiking boots I wear when I need more ankle support - I nearly broke the bank trying to make sure I got a light, well-cushioned pair.

The sharp pain I have been having at times in the back of my right knee has now appeared in my left, so I am pretty sure that it's the exercises or surgery that's triggered it. Was getting worried for a while that I'd torn something or had some debris in the joint, as I could wiggle my leg around and the pain would go. I am thinking that it may be muscle spasm or something now and the wriggling movement I do breaks the spasm.

Physio today! Get to spend half an hour with my hunky physio! Mmm, mmm!! At least he's better at time management than my OS. I might get out of there on time today (was really late last time because I saw the OS too).

I am starting to get nervous about returning to work next week. Don't know how I'll go. Am sure it'll all be fine, but it doesn't help the nerves whenever I think about it.

Must go. The kids need to get to school.

Bye for now,
Kathy

Offline kathat

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Re: I have had an improvement!!
« Reply #20 on: October 18, 2007, 08:16:09 AM »
Damn! A crappy day! I hate these! Nothing has gone wrong in particular but I just want to cry! How irritating!

Physio was ok. A bit of a non-event. We talked about my pains - he picked up straight away that all was not quite right. First, the pain in the front of my right leg just below the knee seems to be from scar tissue and irritation of something. No probs, just need to massage my scars harder and more often (like 3 times a day isn't enough!). The pain in the back of my left knee seems to be from some swelling and irritation. He can pinpoint the exact spot and it hurts to push on it. The pain in the back of my right knee is a worry. Because I can get rid of it by wiggling my leg, and he can't localise the pain to a particular spot, he's worried it may be debris in the joint. Bummer. I haven't had it for nearly 2 days now, so I'm keeping my fingers crossed. I do have swelling in the back of both knees which I didn't realise as I can't see there. Have to massage that too. Have lost extension in my right leg (probably due to the pain, as I can't fully extend when it hurts) so I have to push for full extension. No new exercises - just bump up the weights for the straight leg raises to "put some meat on those bones" as he is fond of saying (I must admit, my knees are a bit knobbly). He will get me walking outside for exercise once everything else settles down. Won't see him for 2 more weeks. Oh, and I got some neoprene sleeves to keep the knees warm. Gee, wow.

Felt a bit low after that so went for some retail therapy. Bought some track pants (sexy  8) ) and socks (gee, what a fashion queen!). Still want to have a good cry but the kids are home now. Don't know what it is about doctor and physio appointments that get me down, but I usually feel this way after them all. I think it's so nice to have someone focus just on me and my knee problems that it's a let down to face the real world where my disability isn't immediately obvious and I'm struggling to come to terms with my restrictions but nobody sees it. Hmm. So nice to have somewhere I can vent though. Thanks so much for being here.

Well, I have starving kids to feed (nearly wrote feeding kids to starve!!! Ooops). Might have a shower and put on my new tracky-dacks and socks first. Then I can do my exercises and get all sweaty in them! Maybe I'll do the exercises first!

Bye for now and thanks for listening,
Kathy

Offline tanyap

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Re: I have had an improvement!!
« Reply #21 on: October 18, 2007, 09:43:56 AM »
You may just be having soft tissue problems in the back of your knees either. I was getting a sharp pain in the back of mine that I could wiggle away OR I could force my leg to full extension and there was a loud 'crack' that I could feel and then the pain was gone, itd build up again once relieved. OS muttered tendons at me, PT kept saying it was probably tendons had me doing stretches to alleviate it, then I discovered off my own bat that I could make the pain come at will by doing 1 leg squats, and crack it away - took me a while to realise it was happening from me not contracting my quads when straightening my leg - thats why I could produce it on 1 leg squats - I was using my back to get up the wall as it were - it was only when my VMO started firing I discovered it - I havent had it in a few weeks now since the Awakening has begun. Presumably it WAS tendons getting confused cos the quads werent doing anything.

I hate the straight leg raises - they are really hard!!! Im up on a lot of weight now - but they stay just as difficult for weeks without changing weight....

Good to hear youre still walking the catwalk of fashion - Im your fashion sister on the other side of the world :)

I ALWAYS feel down after the OS and PT appointments. Its stressful!!! Do cry if you need to - its important to let it out - otherwise it festers inside - you feel much better after a cry - my boyfriend is used to me periodically letting it rip and turning into screaming crying loony woman for an evening. Its normal, pain is very wearying.

Hey stop starving those kids!!

Oh and speaking of feeding/starving - dont forget to make sure you eat plenty of protein to give your body something to build muscle with!!!
xx
Tanya
1986 - recurrent dislocations of right patella began
1988 - Modified Hauser Procedure
1991 - dislocations started again
2005 to 2007 - 150 dislocations in 2 years - OUCH!!!
June 2007 - new OS, new physio
Oct 2007 - VMO woke up
Mar 2008 - big quads, still dislocating
Apr 2008 - next OS app

Offline kathat

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Re: I have had an improvement!!
« Reply #22 on: October 18, 2007, 01:55:40 PM »
I hadn't thought of protein input. I haven't been thinking too hard about what I eat. Gee, I make a really good nurse - we push extra protein on lots of our patients at work but I forgot about it when I came to my own rehab!!

I'm feeling better now. Had a committee meeting (for Scouts) so I got out of the house and got to chat with friends and shared a few jokes. One of them even remembered that my birthday is soon and gave me a pressie. A great pick-me-up!

I am sure the exercises I was given last week have stirred up ALL my pains. I am just thrilled that my physio is a good one. When I walked into his room he asked me what was troubling my knees, and he picked up the exact moment the pain kicked in when I was testing out the braces by walking down the hall (even with my back to him). He also knew exactly which exercise to get me to do to trigger one of the pains, and told me what to do to help relieve it. I pay a fortune for just a 15 minute appointment, but it's worth every bit. Health insurance covers some of the cost, but it's still on the expensive side. I don't have to go very often though. I have to do all my exercises at home. When I see him he does a quick progress check on extension, flexion, and how I am going with the exercises. Then he does a quick massage to check how the scar tissue is breaking up. This visit he checked out the pains and organised the braces. Then he tells me what exercises to do before I see him again. He seems to pack quite a lot into 15 minutes.

I'm the ultimate in trendy at the moment, in my faded PJ pants and one of hubby's old t-shirts.

How's The Awakening going? Are things getting more comfortable? Do you have good muscle strength in the rest of your knee from all those SLRs? I have calf exercise to do too, to help realign things. Hope they work - lots of knee surgery is contraindicated if alignment isn't good. The calf exercises certainly stir up lots of discomfort, so something is happening.

Well, another set of exercises needs doing before bed. Oh, to not have to do SLRs ever again!

See you round,
Kathy

Offline Sore knee

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Re: I have had an improvement!!
« Reply #23 on: October 20, 2007, 10:49:47 AM »
 ;D Tanya I have came home to your great news. I am so pleased for you. I sent you a postcard but no doubt it will arrive way after me. Struggled to get internet access, there was a business centre but felt a bit out of place me standing there in shorts, t-shirt and wobbly leg :)

I am really delighted for you, did you have your meeting with your PT or has all this happened since then ????

I am so pleased for you
11/5/07 LR right knee and cartilage tidied up
6/8/07 Knee aspiration, steroid injection- more physio
22/8/07 Knee to be scoped for answers
16/5/08 Patella stabilisation for  subluxations
24/6/08 Infection -hospitalised for a week. Debridement surgery
21/11/08 Repeat patella stabilisation performed

Offline tanyap

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Re: I have had an improvement!!
« Reply #24 on: October 20, 2007, 11:07:22 AM »
Hi Joanne,
youre such a sweetie!! No card yet - Ill let you know!

How was your trip? Did you have fun? I missed you posting here!!! Hows the knee???

My VMO started waking up around 3 weeks ago, a day of sort of twitchy electric shock type feelings in the muscle for the day and then after that I could just 'feel' the muscle. I did dislocate after that, so I didnt notice much change for a week or so, then suddenly I realised when Im doing my exercises that I can actually contract it properly now - the exercises feel so different - it did feel like I was just bending my leg about, now it feels like I am using a muscle to control that bending.
I had PT last Monday - I told her and showed her my new working muscle, she was very impressed (and she is HARD to impress!!), its still not firing automatically yet, I can manually contract it at will, but it doesnt do it without me thinking about it, but this is more or less exactly what my OS said would happen, one day thered be enough muscle fibres for it to just start working. My PT says when it gets bigger and stronger itll start firing automatically. Ive a new lease of life for my exercises now :)
Its brought with it a lot of pain, my kneecap has not been getting correctly pulled medially for so long, it hurts, but Im hoping that will also die off as the muscle gets stronger.

It doesnt feel much different in everyday life yet, but hopefully that will come when it starts firing automatically!!
xxx
Tanya
1986 - recurrent dislocations of right patella began
1988 - Modified Hauser Procedure
1991 - dislocations started again
2005 to 2007 - 150 dislocations in 2 years - OUCH!!!
June 2007 - new OS, new physio
Oct 2007 - VMO woke up
Mar 2008 - big quads, still dislocating
Apr 2008 - next OS app

Offline Sore knee

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Re: I have had an improvement!!
« Reply #25 on: October 20, 2007, 12:32:37 PM »
Wow Tanya that is so good I am delighted for you.

Keep going with those exercises, I bet you do them all the time now !!!! You will be our role model  ;D

My knee didn't like the heat or the walking. My kids on the other hand loved it all, Disney daft !!!!

Anyway I spoke to my PT who had a meeting with the OS and they are going to brace my knee to begin with. Then they may do further muscle testing, EMG testing or something. I will find out more next week when I see my PT. I have also been told of a specialist sports injury PT who is meant to be excellent with knees in Glasgow and I will go see him too for advice as well I think. It can't do any harm at this stage.

I am over the moon for you, when I left you were quite disheartened so thats great progress.
11/5/07 LR right knee and cartilage tidied up
6/8/07 Knee aspiration, steroid injection- more physio
22/8/07 Knee to be scoped for answers
16/5/08 Patella stabilisation for  subluxations
24/6/08 Infection -hospitalised for a week. Debridement surgery
21/11/08 Repeat patella stabilisation performed

Offline tanyap

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Re: I have had an improvement!!
« Reply #26 on: October 20, 2007, 01:44:50 PM »
Hi Joanne,
Im so glad the kids had fun - and you know what, you were worried about the trip and youve done it now so thats a success for you too.

I did 10 minutes on my treadmill this morning, I concentrated pulling my VMO in on each step. Its tiring!!!! Im going to try to get up to a half hour each day (with the rest of the exercises), Im really pushing for it to do its thing automatically!!

The more people you see the better - any new set of eyes might bring new advice. Ill be interested to hear about your muscle testing. I think Im resigned to knowing that although Im making slow progress everyday life isnt gonna change much for now. I did the isokinetic testing in PT last monday, Id gained 18.6% more strength in my bad leg - that was in 7 weeks since last test. So progress is slow, but my PT says so long as its a steady upward crawl dont worry about it taking time.

I WAS very disheartened when you left, my attitude has definitely improved, even though my pain levels are up. I dont really mind the pain, its the instability I hate.

I even went out for a few drinks last saturday night - i brought crutches to elimate the worry of possibly dislocating. It was grand! I didnt mind about bringing crutches cos otherwise I just probably wouldnt have gone - so its better to get out, its not like I would have done anything but sit on the couch otherwise, and that wouldnt have been using my leg anyway!!!

When do you see your PT again?
xx
Tanya
1986 - recurrent dislocations of right patella began
1988 - Modified Hauser Procedure
1991 - dislocations started again
2005 to 2007 - 150 dislocations in 2 years - OUCH!!!
June 2007 - new OS, new physio
Oct 2007 - VMO woke up
Mar 2008 - big quads, still dislocating
Apr 2008 - next OS app

Offline Sore knee

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Re: I have had an improvement!!
« Reply #27 on: October 21, 2007, 07:41:38 PM »
I have to phone tomorrow morning to get an apt and take it from there. My knee is very unhappy right now its maybe the abuse it took on holiday or the change in temp but its sore sore sore  :o. Stairs are a nightmare just now and the sharp pains bhind the knee are ever increasing so I hope whatever they do helps.

I am so pleased things are progressing and out for a drink or two is always a good sign...any Guiness in there by chance ??????

Its great to hear you so positive, keep going we are all behind you YAY !!!!!!!
11/5/07 LR right knee and cartilage tidied up
6/8/07 Knee aspiration, steroid injection- more physio
22/8/07 Knee to be scoped for answers
16/5/08 Patella stabilisation for  subluxations
24/6/08 Infection -hospitalised for a week. Debridement surgery
21/11/08 Repeat patella stabilisation performed

Offline tanyap

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Re: I have had an improvement!!
« Reply #28 on: October 22, 2007, 09:28:20 AM »
I betcha your sharp pains behind the knee are happening for the same reason mine did - I finally realised it was from putting weight down through my leg, straightening it up and not engaging my quads. The tendons in the back of the knee dont like when your quads are slack while you put weight down through it and straighten up. Its not happening me since my VMO started firing - instead I get soreness in the front from pulling in my VMO :)

I reckon your knee is getting sorer just from being unsupported. I am much the same, sore sore sore.......


Are you still doing your exercises every day? Are any of them getting easier?
xx
Tanya


1986 - recurrent dislocations of right patella began
1988 - Modified Hauser Procedure
1991 - dislocations started again
2005 to 2007 - 150 dislocations in 2 years - OUCH!!!
June 2007 - new OS, new physio
Oct 2007 - VMO woke up
Mar 2008 - big quads, still dislocating
Apr 2008 - next OS app

Offline Sore knee

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Re: I have had an improvement!!
« Reply #29 on: October 22, 2007, 10:16:58 AM »
I would have to say no not really on that one. Right now my SLR are harder than ever I think any muscles I used on holiday are totally fatigued. I read up on the EMG testing they mentioned and must admit I don;t fancy it much but if it gives a solution then hey ho I have to do it. Waiting to speak to my PT today and see what they are going to do.

You sound cheery today so thats great, sorry about the pain but the enthusiasm you now have is wonderful :)
11/5/07 LR right knee and cartilage tidied up
6/8/07 Knee aspiration, steroid injection- more physio
22/8/07 Knee to be scoped for answers
16/5/08 Patella stabilisation for  subluxations
24/6/08 Infection -hospitalised for a week. Debridement surgery
21/11/08 Repeat patella stabilisation performed