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Author Topic: Healing time post-arthroscopy?  (Read 9682 times)

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Offline nrw

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Healing time post-arthroscopy?
« on: June 18, 2008, 09:05:47 AM »
Hi all,

I was just wondering what the healing time was on the wounds following an atrhroscopy? I'm going on a beach holiday to Croatia (from UK) 3 weeks post-op & will obviouslly want to go swimming, walk around etc. (haven't got insurance yet, imagine it will be *loads* to cover knee).

At the moment the surgeon hasn't/can't specify what he will do whilst inside my knee as I haven't had a recent mri or xray (see previous post on forum) - so not sure extent of surgery as yet................i'm hopefuly if anything, it's a minor cleanup/repair.

Thanks in advance!  ;D
1993 - Teenage R knee pain, various scans, lots of physio, no real answer
2006 - MRI - still no answer
03/08 - Weak/unstable R knee, pain
06/08 - R Knee gave way horse-riding - swelling, pain
06/08 - Athroscopy concluded no damage
08/08 - Diagnosed inflammatory joint disease in R knee

Offline Kaputt_Knee

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  • [Ed: Sue sadly passed away in 2016]
Re: Healing time post-arthroscopy?
« Reply #1 on: June 18, 2008, 10:14:27 AM »
You are asking the proverbial "How long is a piece of string" question.

As your surgeon has said he does not know what he will do until he goes in. just to be on the safe side it might be worth looking at the cancellation clauses of your travel insurance as medical grounds are usually fairly generous in the refunds IF you need to cancel.

If he does very little you should be OK as long as you do not over do it. If he does more work you MAY be struggling depending on what exactly he does. I've been up and skiing 2 to 3 weeks after arthroscopies and also non-weight bearing for 4 weeks all according to what was done!


Sorry not to be more precise but you more or less answered your question when you said "he does not know yet precisely what he is going to do!

Sue  ;) in Germany
1989 big trauma R. knee - sorted
1990-2004 3ACL recons and 20+ arthroscopies -RK
3/06 LK ACL torn!
4/06 ACL recon, kneecap broken
09 &10/06- 2x meniscus trims
3/07 - Notch Plastic & Lateral Release
14/8/08 complete revision ACL plus LCL/PLC recon
6/2/09 returned to skiing! Whoopee

Offline nrw

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Re: Healing time post-arthroscopy?
« Reply #2 on: June 18, 2008, 10:21:23 AM »
Thanks for reply, I know, was a tricky question! I think I meant, assuming that the repair is something minor, how long do the wounds take to heal? Is it OK to go swimming? I appreciate I may be a bit wobbly for a while, but hey, a relaxing holiday may be just what the doc ordered  :)
1993 - Teenage R knee pain, various scans, lots of physio, no real answer
2006 - MRI - still no answer
03/08 - Weak/unstable R knee, pain
06/08 - R Knee gave way horse-riding - swelling, pain
06/08 - Athroscopy concluded no damage
08/08 - Diagnosed inflammatory joint disease in R knee

Offline tanyap

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Re: Healing time post-arthroscopy?
« Reply #3 on: June 18, 2008, 12:04:20 PM »
I had a scope 4 weeks ago.

I had 3 incision sites. All were stitched. I removed the stitches myself 8 days after the surgery. 2 weeks after the surgery I saw my OS for post op appointment and wounds were fully healed over.

Depending on what gets done when the surgeon is in there I dont know how long it will take for you knee to heal, but the incision sites shouldnt take too long at all.
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 JustMeInNC

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Re: Healing time post-arthroscopy?
« Reply #4 on: June 18, 2008, 01:53:39 PM »
I had my 4th surgery on 5-27. The did a clean up and a Lateral Release. I got my stiches out 2 weeks later and was able to go swimming in our pool. Now walking around for me is still very slow and painfull, but then again the Doc already told me that there was alot of damage in there and i need more surgery. hope that you have a wonderful vacation ( IM JELIOUS) can you pack me in your suitcase  ;D
I'm so busy that I'm not sure if I lost my horse or just found my lead rope.

1989 - Right Knee - don't rember what they did
1997 - Right Knee - Orthoscopic clean up again
2000 - LR on left knee
2001 - LR on right knee
2008 -LR on right knee (again)
9-18-2009 - Maquet osteotomy right knee

Offline Sore knee

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Re: Healing time post-arthroscopy?
« Reply #5 on: June 18, 2008, 04:47:55 PM »
If its just minor you should be fine. I had 2 scopes now, the first with a LR and the 2nd a clean up. I was fully weight bearing in 24 hours and walking about...my knee isses are more complex than a basic clean up but if its just a minor thing then I wouldnt be worrying about your holiday, everyone I spoke to prior to my scope said much the same, they were up and walking, running within a week or two.
good luck
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 nrw

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Re: Healing time post-arthroscopy?
« Reply #6 on: June 19, 2008, 09:38:48 AM »
Thanks for all the responses guys, sounds like i'll be OK if it all goes well. I haven't actually booked it yet, and after my mother putting the fear of god into me, has made me think I should wait until after Tues when I have it done, juuussstttt in case  :'(

Not really something anybody would say, but looking forward to op, i'm so sick of this pain now & I just want it fixed!!!!!!1  >:(
1993 - Teenage R knee pain, various scans, lots of physio, no real answer
2006 - MRI - still no answer
03/08 - Weak/unstable R knee, pain
06/08 - R Knee gave way horse-riding - swelling, pain
06/08 - Athroscopy concluded no damage
08/08 - Diagnosed inflammatory joint disease in R knee

Offline tanyap

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Re: Healing time post-arthroscopy?
« Reply #7 on: June 19, 2008, 10:13:44 AM »
nrw - I would wait if I were you. The surgeon may do something very simple (like remove floating foreign body or snip off damaged cartilage or something) that takes minimal time to heal from and you'll be fine for a holiday. But on the off chance he does something more extensive you dont want the stress of a holiday if youre on crutches or not healed etc... You'll know immediately after the scope what the story is, so you might be better to hold off the few days before booking.

I was dying for my scope too - its normal when you just want to be fixed!!!
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 nrw

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Re: Healing time post-arthroscopy?
« Reply #8 on: June 19, 2008, 10:44:41 AM »
Thanks tanyap, I think the voice of reason is kicking in............ you never know, the holiday may go down in price  :P tbh if I was on crutches, I may still go, the hubby & I have had an awful few months and just need to get away for a week  :(

btw, your dislocation history sounds horrendous, are you any closer to being fixed?
1993 - Teenage R knee pain, various scans, lots of physio, no real answer
2006 - MRI - still no answer
03/08 - Weak/unstable R knee, pain
06/08 - R Knee gave way horse-riding - swelling, pain
06/08 - Athroscopy concluded no damage
08/08 - Diagnosed inflammatory joint disease in R knee

Offline tanyap

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Re: Healing time post-arthroscopy?
« Reply #9 on: June 19, 2008, 11:12:16 AM »
well you could certainly still go on crutches, but as a juuuuust in case Id say wait and book it after the scope. Im more thinking in terms of a surgeon saying they may need to do something else or a lot of swelling and they dont like you flying if you swell a lot. Now mind you probably none of that will happen, but you may lose money if you did have to cancel you know?

oh i should update my profile - im fixed :) Had a scope 4 weeks ago today, turned out all my problems were large bucket handle tear of medial meniscus, was lying flat on MRI and I had a crappy previous surgeon who just wouldnt listen to me. So I got a new surgeon and 6 weeks later scope and now im good - need a lot of physio though cos havent been able to use my leg properly for 3 years. I wasnt actually dislocating, the meniscus was getting stuck in the joint mechanism and I was subluxing.
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 nrw

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Re: Healing time post-arthroscopy?
« Reply #10 on: June 19, 2008, 11:44:25 AM »
Oh great news, i'm pleased you're sorted, gives me hope!  ;D

I wasn't sure what subluxing was, so had to look it up & i'm still not entirely sure! What does this feel like?

With my right knee it sometimes feels locked or stuck (I can fully bend/straighten it, it's more of a locking sensation on the inside), I feel the need to keep bending and straightening it using muscle force in my leg and my hand pushing slightly on the knee cap to get it to click or crack....it feels relieved after that. It is only my right knee I get this, no other joints. Never really thought anything of it, as I can relieve the feeling myself - although I imagine it's not doing my knee the world of good.....
1993 - Teenage R knee pain, various scans, lots of physio, no real answer
2006 - MRI - still no answer
03/08 - Weak/unstable R knee, pain
06/08 - R Knee gave way horse-riding - swelling, pain
06/08 - Athroscopy concluded no damage
08/08 - Diagnosed inflammatory joint disease in R knee

Offline tanyap

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Re: Healing time post-arthroscopy?
« Reply #11 on: June 19, 2008, 12:36:40 PM »
A patella sublux is a partial dislocation, so it doesnt flip out over the condyle and end up off on the side of your leg but it 'dislodges' in place if you know what I mean.

My torn meniscus was causing my lower leg to move incorrectly in relation to my upper leg - to me it felt like a patella sublux (based on my history that would have made sense too), but in laymans terms I just knew the knee was 'out of joint' but couldnt really tell what bit was. It was only after 100s of these events that I started poking round it in out of joint position and realised my patella wasnt involved at all.

My OS referred to the lower leg being out of position with the upper as a sublux - so I guess its just when the joint mechanism is not lined up correctly.

It feels like your leg is 'wrong', I could manually extend my leg, relax the muscles, and push on my thigh and there was a loud CRACK and all would be back in place. Going out of place felt like a 'whooomp' and like the direction of force was happening from medial to lateral, so my right leg felt like it was going to the right and twisting, then being stuck (all very quickly).

Sounds like whats happening you is a more minor version of what was happening me. I would swell and not be able to use my leg afterwards.
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 nrw

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Re: Healing time post-arthroscopy?
« Reply #12 on: June 19, 2008, 02:41:32 PM »
OOh ok, thanks very much for explaining, makes more sense now. Does sound like something similar but nowheer near as bad, I've never really poked around much when it does feel stuck....don't think I can right now as the swelling has made it impossible to bend completely, haven't felt the need to crack it since I hurt it 5 weeks ago actually. The swelling is going down though, as you can see the shape of my kneecap better. Hopefully the less swelling there is the more comfortable post-op i'll be.

Other thing that hadn't occured to me was flying & swelling not being a good combination...so thanks for that too  :)
1993 - Teenage R knee pain, various scans, lots of physio, no real answer
2006 - MRI - still no answer
03/08 - Weak/unstable R knee, pain
06/08 - R Knee gave way horse-riding - swelling, pain
06/08 - Athroscopy concluded no damage
08/08 - Diagnosed inflammatory joint disease in R knee

Offline tanyap

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Re: Healing time post-arthroscopy?
« Reply #13 on: June 19, 2008, 04:07:28 PM »
Well when they scope you they will be able to have a look and see exactly whats going on - my MRI didnt show my problem, nor did x-rays or clinical examination - but my new OS actually believed me - my last one kept acting like i was crazy.

Its not bad at all having a scope. If I were to grade pain on a 1 to 10, 1 being a mild headache and 10 being beaten with a baseball bat - Id say I never went about a 3, and that was the day after the op, the day after that I was back to a 2 and hovered between a 1 and 2 for the next 2 weeks and now im at a .5 occasionally (like immediately after PT for a while). But thats only cos my problem went on soooo long that all my muscles wasted and I couldnt keep them big no matter how hard I tried.

I am going on holiday in a couple of weeks and they insured me - I had to ring the insurance place and declare 'cartilage repair' (they didnt have partial menisectomy on the drop down list lol), and that doesnt have any effect on insurance. I could easily have flown 2 weeks after - but if its a long trip beware cos you may get some stiffening from sitting in one position too long.
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 nrw

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Re: Healing time post-arthroscopy?
« Reply #14 on: June 19, 2008, 05:10:10 PM »
Wow, i've had exactly the same problem, all xrays & mris seem clear. I've had this knee problem since I was 12 or 13, and i'm now 27...and finally they do a scope! It almost a sigh of relief, it's the way they look you as if to say "what do you want me to do about it??". As I have back problems aswell, the same OS referred me to the back surgeon for 2 years first saying it's probably to do with my back, before I went back to him 2 weeks ago!

Oh good, i've taken 2 days off work & my op is at 7am (!) so I was hoping that would be enough (as i'm a contractor and don't get paid unless I work). I've organised lifts into work too incase I can't drive. I've been given a series of exercises to do, the muscle just above my kneecap (hamstring) is still very hard and swollen so can't support leg too much.

Are you from UK? which insurance co did you use?? We're going to Croatia, so only a 2 hr flight, and I usually get up and walk around anyway  :) (yes, one of those annoying people usually in the middle of the aisle he,he)
1993 - Teenage R knee pain, various scans, lots of physio, no real answer
2006 - MRI - still no answer
03/08 - Weak/unstable R knee, pain
06/08 - R Knee gave way horse-riding - swelling, pain
06/08 - Athroscopy concluded no damage
08/08 - Diagnosed inflammatory joint disease in R knee















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