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Author Topic: New to the board...wanting advice or experience on my problems  (Read 872 times)

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Offline prowlenn

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I am new here to I wanted to say hello to everyone and to see if anyone had any advice or have had an experience like I have.... I will keep it the short short
version  :).   BTW, my name is Sam..

I am 31. I had meniscal surgery for bucket handle tear 2 1/2 yrs ago.  I was better for about four months then problems with swelling, locking, etc.  After MRI, CT scan, and x-rays all came back clean my os said nothing was wrong.  Went for 2nd opinion, Doctor told me at the first appt what it was.  I had surgery again but this times he had to remove a piece of my quad tendon that was not getting good blood flow, forein body removal from behind patella, and he found chondromalcia.  Was in bledso for 3 months, 6 months of rehab which resulted in 6 months of relief.  As a fluke, I barely bumped my knee on a guardrail and it triggered the swelling, extreme pain, temp difference, locking, etc.  MRI now reveals degenation on both sides of my mensicus.  So off to 3rd os for opinion, which I am still scratching my head over, who started me on synvisc.  I had first injection which gave some increased pain that went away after three days.  I had my second inj today and I just got back from er. I had extreme pain, swelling, redness, calf muscle cramping.  ER says prob reaction to the synvisc.  So I am in a position that the os said no surgery would help except TKR but he wouldn't do it at my age.  He never gave me anything as diagnoses outright.  Just stated that the locking and popping is arthritis, my patella is "kinda" tracking outward when I walk, no instabilty that he felt, but that I need to strenghten my muscle that runs down the inner side of my knee.  ???

Can anyone help?
Sam   \m/

I would rather be hated for what I am then loved for what I am not......

Offline embillma

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Re: New to the board...wanting advice or experience on my problems
« Reply #1 on: June 13, 2009, 05:36:48 AM »
Hi Sam,

I don't know how bad your meniscus problem is but you should research microfracturing, OATS, ACI surgery, and stem cell surgeries.  Then see if there are surgeons in your area that perform any of those and discuss those options with them. 

My OS said he doesn't do TKR on patients under 45 because they usually only last about 15 years and then you need a new one. The new one doesn't last as long as the first...   

All this being said, I had ACI surgery and although it did cause some relief, it was a surgery with pretty intensive recovery and it's 2 years later and I'm still having knee problems. According to x-rays, it does look like the ACI surgery worked as there is much more space between my knee bones now.  Just have to figure out why I still have pain. I'm going in on Monday with my latest MRI results to see what's going on. 

To strengthen your knee muscles, do leg lifts on your back, stomach, and both sides...if that's too easy strap ankle weights hamstring and try some more.
1998 ACL reconstruction
2005 Microfracturing
2006 ACI
2007 Overgrowth of ACI -trimmed down excess cartilage

Offline digginit

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Re: New to the board...wanting advice or experience on my problems
« Reply #2 on: June 13, 2009, 01:00:41 PM »
Hey Sam!  Sorry your knee is giving you such fits!  SynVisc has had some problems with flare reactions, like the one it sounds like you've had.  However, there are other similar formulations that don't do that so much.  I'd discuss the option of a different one with your OS.

Of course the menisci are important pieces of cartilage.  They're sort of shock absorbers between the femoral and tibial surfaces of the knee.  And you've lost a whole lot of yours it sounds like.  I'm not sure how active you've been since the meniscectomies before it started hurting again, but slowing way down on high-impact activity will be important for you. 

If you had free bodies in your knee at your last surgery, then you probably have cartilage chunking off of one of those surfaces.  Did he say where your arthritis is located?  There are some procedures that help fill in the holes, so to speak, and they're worth discussing, but they're also surgeries.  Every surgery affects the joint in the long run, and none of those last all that long (if they're successful to begin with).

It would be a good time to have a good discussion with your orthopaedist about all of the options, from minimizing activity to other hyaluronic acid injections to periodic cortisone shots to those "salvage" procedures.  Look at the least invasive alternative that is acceptable to you.  Start there and then move forward.  That's my little bit of knee advice anyway.

~dig

Offline prowlenn

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Re: New to the board...wanting advice or experience on my problems
« Reply #3 on: June 14, 2009, 09:32:55 PM »
Thanks for the info....

I didn't get see that you all had posted anything until just a few mins. ago.  I went on my own online and did some research and I came across a Doctor who has a website without alot of wonderful information.  As I read the pages, I was reading my symptoms word for word. Then, I see on here that you guys are along the same lines as this doctors information.  Thank you all so much.  I am going for my follow up with my os on Wed. who has stated they will not be doing the third synvisc injection. But I found a doctor in my state, only about two hours from me actually, who has experience with my problems, who I called and his office scheduled me an appointment on July 6 with no questions asked.  I don't know wheither I should tell my current os about this appt, i don't want him to be mad but he had told me nothing.  Basically treated me like I wanted narcotics and that is it.  Which is the farthest from where I want to be at 31.  I acutally worked for an orthopedic surgeron for about three years(total of eight years in doctor's office's as a medical assistant/office manager), so I know quite a bit about what is going on.  My frustaton is  alot from not being told anything in particular.  He has not stated to me where he believes the arthritis is/and or is developing.  He actually didn't tell me anything, I am just pieceing together the little tidbits of information he threw at me.  I feel so blessed that I found this board because up  until I started reading on here, I thought I was going crazy and that this all could be just in my head. 

I have three kids, 13, 10, and 6 so I try to be very active...at least I try when I can.  I had to quite coaching soccer, and I can't help my oldest son with his soccer drills.  I am lucky to be able to walk when my knee flares up.  I did instist that my os give me a prescription for a custome knee brace(which he didn't want to do) but the one they ordered me is the don joy playmaker.  It is hinged but also has the point system for proper patellar tracking.  I only had it one day before the synvisc problem but for that one day I could walk down my steps normally, without a huge amount of pain!  I was excited.  I have had to do the side step, you know one leg(my good leg) down, then my other one, and so on since it started flaring up. 

embillma, let me know how your latest MRI results are, you seem to be along the same route that I am on.  Dig, thank you for the advice, I am going to try to talk to my os on wed but he never stated anything about procedures to help fill in holes.   I actually went in with two course's that I thought best when I first saw my third os and he kinda threw his hands up at me like he had nothing else he could do.  Again, I can not thank you all and this board enough for giving me some hope that there is someone out there who believes me.

Sam   \m/

I would rather be hated for what I am then loved for what I am not......

Offline embillma

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Re: New to the board...wanting advice or experience on my problems
« Reply #4 on: June 15, 2009, 10:15:58 PM »
Hey Sam,

Just got back from the knee doctor and more frustrating news.  We looked at my MRI results together and I have some bone edema (swelling) right exactly where I am having the pain.  Unfortunately, my doctor doesn't know why!  He said there is a possibility that when he trimmed down my overgrowth of cartilage that it didn't get trimmed down enough and that may be part of the aggrivation because you can see my ACI implant in the MRI but the doc thinks it looks a little bigger than most.  He already trimmed it down once though and says it's a tricky thing to do because I invested a lot of time/money/ and rehab in the ACI procedure and doesn't want to trim it down too much.  So, my options are get a scope and find out exactly what's going on, take it easy with only biking as exercise for a month and use an unloading knee brace...or get the synvisc injections.  He suggested not going with the synvisc injections because although it might relieve the symptoms it won't get to the root of the problem...and won't prevent it from happening again.  He's hoping that if I just take it easy for a month and relieve the pressure in my knee for 4-6 weeks that the bone swelling will go down and might not flare up again.   

Glad you are getting another opinion.  It's your knee, you have to look out for it, so don't worry about your current OS...especially if he hasn't been helpful.   

I've been switching from icing it, to heating it...the heat seems to help the best right now.
1998 ACL reconstruction
2005 Microfracturing
2006 ACI
2007 Overgrowth of ACI -trimmed down excess cartilage















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