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Author Topic: Meniscus tears and lateral release  (Read 929 times)

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Offline trekker37

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Meniscus tears and lateral release
« on: August 09, 2008, 02:19:40 PM »
I have been a hill walker for many years and it is my main hobby and interest.  For the last four years I have suffered from pain in the side of my right knee and have seen several sports physios and chiropractors.  I've tried rest, exercise and orthotic inserts but the niggling pain remains, particularly on ascents, sometimes on descents, never on the flat.  Finally my doctor sent me for an X Ray which showed the knees are virtually normal with very little degeneration. He then sent me for an MRI which shows "bi-lateral posterior horn tears of both menusci with shallow patello-femoral joints, with early lateral subluxation."
I have seen a specialist and he suggests an arthroscopic assessment, debridement of the meniscus and probably lateral release.
I am still able to walk long distances, although with some discomfort and I'm wondering whether to go ahead with the surgery or just accept the way things are and perhaps walk less, although I'm not keen on the idea.
I am a bit concerned with the lateral release part of the suggested treatment as googling it indicates it has a varied success rate.   Has anyone similar problems or experience with the type of surgery that has been suggested.
Thanks.
Trekker37

Offline eaglemom

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Re: Meniscus tears and lateral release
« Reply #1 on: August 09, 2008, 03:17:22 PM »
I've had several menisus tears - both medial and lateral - both right and left knee.  You do know they will not heal nor get better.  Your decision is on your quality of life vs pain in your life issue.  When both are adversly affected then it is time for surgery.  I will tell you icing won't help with the tear but will help with the swelling that you probably are getting - so I'd make certain to ice no matter what.  Didn't answer your question but you have to answer when your ready for surgery.  eagle

Offline over it

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Re: Meniscus tears and lateral release
« Reply #2 on: August 09, 2008, 11:47:55 PM »
I agree with the above post... it depends on how adversely the pain is affecting you.  I had lateral releases on both knees due to subluxation of my knee caps.  Did it help?  Some but I still need to be careful on how I pivot.  I've torn my meniscus on both knees 8 times now.  It did help with the pain.  Keep doing your research regarding the type of surgery as well as you OS.  I am very lucky to have a great OS as a surgeon and person.  There's nothing worse than to feel abandon when you run into problems or need info about your surgery.  Good Luck.  Keep us posted.

CB

Offline trekker37

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Re: Meniscus tears and lateral release
« Reply #3 on: August 11, 2008, 09:51:40 AM »
Thanks for your replies, they're very helpful.  You both say it really depends on how adversely the pain is affecting you and I know that is the crux of the matter but I'm still not sure!  I was out on the hills yesterday and as usual my knee ached going up and down hill but was fine on the flat.  I suppose my worry is that the cure might be worse than the symptoms!  A month ago I went to the doctors to see if he could tell me why my knee was aching and within a couple of weeks I was scheduled for surgery.  Now I'm thinking, "whoa, this is all a bit sudden!"  I'm a wimp of course, nervous about the op and the possible long term consequences of the lateral release in particular.  I've received a letter booking me in for surgery at the end of next month so I'm going to have to make my mind up quickly, do I go for it or do put up with knees that ache but aren't agony by any means?  I know it's down to me....
Trekker37

Offline Coach Phil

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Re: Meniscus tears and lateral release
« Reply #4 on: August 12, 2008, 02:34:04 PM »
I have a question for all. I had 2 tears in my medial meniscus, had surgery and had the tears removed. It has been seven weeks today and I am still having problems. I am still doing PT but it doesn't seem to be getting any better. I have all the signs of a blood clot and have had two ultra-sounds and both have showed up good. Some days it doesn't bother me and then it usually hits me on the weekend and when I wake up my knee is so stiff, my calf is swelled and hurts, and my foot (ankle) is stiff and it is hard to bend. Has anyone experienced this problem after surgery before? My OS has told me that I was a mystery and he didn't understand why I was having so much trouble.