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Author Topic: Why can't I run.. a little?  (Read 1232 times)

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Offline Forester

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Why can't I run.. a little?
« on: September 27, 2009, 01:25:46 PM »
I've an old cruciate and lateral tear problem from 1970something which was never treated and it still makes my knee unstable.  Now I have severe OA in the same knee and my orthopaedic surgeon wanted to replace my knee immediately, but I felt I was used to the pain and could go on longer (I'm 58).  In addition, they're not always successful operations and can make things worse so I didn't want to burn my boats.  I cope with diclofenac 75mg twice daily and get to the gym 4-5 times a week to keep fit.  I have a lot of paraesthesia in my thigh and feel there may be some nerve damage which could be blocking my knee pain (pure speculation!) but it's never been unbearable.  The joint pathology looks worse than it feels to me and there are people on this site in much worse pain.  I've tried simple hinged braces, but haven't found the right one yet and mostly I rely on my muscle strength to keep my knee from wobbling about too much.

Snag is, I'd been running moderate distances for a couple of years despite the pain and loving it.  I realise it's best to stay off tarmac and on softer surfaces.  When I asked, my surgeon had a small blue fit and told me I was on no account to run any more, ever, with or without a knee replacement or brace.  If I thought I could run afterwards, I'd even have the surgery.  I hate cycling because the traffic is pretty dangerous on local roads and the pools round here are dirty and overcrowded.  I do walk a bit, but more when I can get away to the mountains for a couple of weeks.

I'd really like to be able to run gently every day, up to about 10k, no road races, no competitive stuff.  Am I being completely unrealistic? 

Forester (in the UK)

Offline jathib

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  • ACL recon, lateral menisectomy, lateral PKR
Re: Why can't I run.. a little?
« Reply #1 on: September 27, 2009, 03:01:35 PM »
You can run all you want but you need to know that doing so will cause your knee to degenerate faster, much faster. And one false step will cause you to fall down in a heap and then you may not have a choice about when to have surgery. Running is notoriously bad for knees, especially bad knees. Keep running and you'll be having a knee replacement far sooner than you'd like. At this point it's important to preserve the life of your knee, not cause a hasty demise. It's your choice, make damn sure you're not going to regret it. You're better off finding a pool at a college, high school or hotel instead of a public one. Or take up mountain biking where you don't have to worry about cars. That's what I did.

Offline madel23

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Re: Why can't I run.. a little?
« Reply #2 on: September 27, 2009, 07:38:38 PM »
Running is not bad for all knee problems, and for healthy knees it is very good--has been shown to DELAY arthritis in fact.  For some knee problems, biking is worse than running because of the flexion involved.  I don't think running a little will hurt you if you can do it without any pain.  It depends whether you have arthritis in the weight bearing or non-weight bearing parts of your knee.

Offline mmrocker13

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Re: Why can't I run.. a little?
« Reply #3 on: October 18, 2009, 12:07:33 AM »
here's what my doc said to me: "Eventually, you will need an osteotomy, and then a PKR (or TKR). Running may or may not make that day come sooner rather than later (although I'd bet sooner...nothing is for certain). If you can handle the pain, and you want to run, do what you need to do."

Basically, I know my end point. I guess I would rather have X more number of years with running, culminating in a PKR, than X+10 years of NO running, culminating in a PKR.
89: Pat. dislocation, lat. meniscus tear, femoral OCD lesion
89: debridement, chondroplasty, lateral partial menisectomy
02: partial lat. menisc., debride
02: mfx
09: subtotal menisc., debride, c'plasty
10: scope/debride
10: varus DFO
13: HWR
15: total menisc., debride, c'plasty, notchplasty

Offline adlottis

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Re: Why can't I run.. a little?
« Reply #4 on: October 19, 2009, 09:06:24 PM »
I too have severe OA in my left knee and after my last surgery in June I was told my running days were over by my PT, I do trust him, he is an athelete and relates well to people who are wanting to push there bodies.  I tried to negotiate this fact with him, but was told if i wanted to be able to hike and enjoy running around with my kids then I'd better stop or my knee replacement would be coming in 2 years instead of 5-10.  i'm also only 43 so I need to hold out as long as  I can.  I don't hurt while running, I hurt afterward.

1976 first dislocation 10 years old
1980 14 yrs old LR, MR, remove chip bone
1980-2005 numerous dislocations
March 2007 Proximal/distal realignment, chondroplasty
July 2007 MUA
July 2008  synvisc
Sept 2008 patellar tendon tendonitis
June 2009 hardware removal, LR, debriedment