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Author Topic: 5 weeks post op on right knee, now having problems with left knee  (Read 1899 times)

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Offline Stasha83

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Hello

I had surgery on my right knee 5 weeks ago which, touch wood, seems to be recovering well apart from excessive swelling and heat.

I am now having problems with my left knee and am looking for some advice please. Since surgery, I have had the odd ache in the left knee, I presume this is due to the fact that it has been under extra stress while the right knee is recovering and have pretty much just ignored it.

Last Thursday, I went to bend down to plug in my laptop and had a severe sharp pain in my left knee with a crack/pop type noise.

The knee remained painful and swelled considerably but minimal heat. After resting and icing during the day, I noticed that when walking I am experiencing a catching sensation in the front of my knee and pain at the back of my knee. The pain is severe when walking upstairs and I feel the catching sensation on every step.

I also have a strange feeling at the back of my knee, it almost feels like there is a bubble or something (sorry, I really dont know how to explain it) when walking upstairs.

When sitting normally on a chair and then extending the leg straight, it catches badly and if you place your hand on the knee you can actually feel something sticking.

The swelling is getting worse, particullarly at the lower half of the knee area and outside area. This area is also painful when touched.

I have rested and iced for the past 4 days but the situation does not seem to be improving. If anyone could offer me any advice I woiuld be most grateful. I am not sure if this is something that I can put down to excessive strain or if I should contact my consultant.

Many thanks for getting this far, sorry it is a long post and I hope my descriptions make sense!
June 2010 - R knee TPF & Hoffa removal
Dec 2010 - R knee- Arthrofibrosis
Dec 2010 - L knee Myxoid degeneration of meniscus
Jan 2011 - R Knee 11 steroid injections & Synvisc1
Feb 11 - MUA & LOA
June 11- Steroid inj, EMG & nerve tests
Aug 11 - MUA & LOA
Feb 12 - R Knee denervation

Offline Stasha83

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Re: 5 weeks post op on right knee, now having problems with left knee
« Reply #1 on: August 05, 2010, 10:30:27 AM »
A quick update... My knee has now started to lock, the first time on Tuesday whilst doing rehab at the gym for my right knee. My rehab instructor witnessed the locking and recommended that I go back to my consultant as she thinks it may be a torn meniscus. Has anyone else had these symptoms from a torn meniscus?

The pain is also getting worse and I'm now having to walk with a very short stride, almost a shuffle, to avoid the catching sensation and pain. The knee also makes cracking noises a couple of times a day which I have never experienced before with either knee.

Any advice would be really appreciated while I await my appointment.
June 2010 - R knee TPF & Hoffa removal
Dec 2010 - R knee- Arthrofibrosis
Dec 2010 - L knee Myxoid degeneration of meniscus
Jan 2011 - R Knee 11 steroid injections & Synvisc1
Feb 11 - MUA & LOA
June 11- Steroid inj, EMG & nerve tests
Aug 11 - MUA & LOA
Feb 12 - R Knee denervation

Online Vickster

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Re: 5 weeks post op on right knee, now having problems with left knee
« Reply #2 on: August 05, 2010, 11:33:05 AM »
I got swelling, locking, grinding and a buckling sensation while walking from a torn meniscus which was trimmed arthroscopically (indeed, I had ground part of it away)

The bubble could be a Baker's cyst which can be a result of a meniscus tear.  Go back to the consultant, you'll likely need an MRI to diagnose definitively and quite possibly surgery to repair/ trim (meniscus tears sometimes heal on their own, as was the hope with mine, but most of it has a poor blood supply so often not the case).  Continue to RICE, avoid any sort of twisting and take anti-inflammatories for the pain
Came off bike onto concrete 9/9/09
LK arthroscopy 8/2/10
2nd scope on 16/12/10
RK arthroscopy on 5/2/15
Lateral meniscus trim, excision of hoffa's fat pad, chondral stabilisation
LK scope 10.1.19 medial menisectomy, trochlea microfracture, general tidy up

Offline Stasha83

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Re: 5 weeks post op on right knee, now having problems with left knee
« Reply #3 on: August 05, 2010, 11:57:33 AM »
Thanks so much for your reply. That does sound very similar to my problems. How did you find the recovery from your surgery? I will research baker's cysts too as I have not heard of that before.

I'm already on drugs from my right knee surgery but to be honest they are not helping much. My right leg is still in a full length brace so I'm hoping that wont put the consultant off fixing my other leg as the left knee is now preventing me from progressing with my rehab for the right knee. The brace is due to come off in 2 weeks. Why cant things ever be simple?!

Have managed to get an appointment tomorrow with my consultant so will hopefully find out more then.

Thanks again for your advice, I really appreciate it.
June 2010 - R knee TPF & Hoffa removal
Dec 2010 - R knee- Arthrofibrosis
Dec 2010 - L knee Myxoid degeneration of meniscus
Jan 2011 - R Knee 11 steroid injections & Synvisc1
Feb 11 - MUA & LOA
June 11- Steroid inj, EMG & nerve tests
Aug 11 - MUA & LOA
Feb 12 - R Knee denervation

Online Vickster

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Re: 5 weeks post op on right knee, now having problems with left knee
« Reply #4 on: August 05, 2010, 12:17:06 PM »
The recovery from the arthroscopy and meniscus trim was ok - no post op complications, no brace, 1 week pretty much on crutches all the time (PWB) and then 2 weeks more as needed.  No driving for 3 weeks.  Then physio and back to gym. 

Unfortunately, my injury was more complex and I have an osteochondral defect that is refusing to settle (constinued pain, stiffness, swelling) so am likely having more surgery.  However, I can now straighten my leg and it no longer buckles, so the scope seems to have resolved the meniscus related issues.

What did you have done to your right knee?

Good luck with your OS appointment.
Came off bike onto concrete 9/9/09
LK arthroscopy 8/2/10
2nd scope on 16/12/10
RK arthroscopy on 5/2/15
Lateral meniscus trim, excision of hoffa's fat pad, chondral stabilisation
LK scope 10.1.19 medial menisectomy, trochlea microfracture, general tidy up

Offline Stasha83

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Re: 5 weeks post op on right knee, now having problems with left knee
« Reply #5 on: August 05, 2010, 01:02:59 PM »
That recovery sounds ok, alot better than my current one. Alot quicker too. I wondered if you would have been in a brace, I dont like the thought of having one on both legs! Sorry to hear about your complication, hope it can be fixed. The more I research the more it seems that knee injuries are like opening a can of worms.

The problems with my right knee were as follows (all done just jogging on a treadmill at the gym!):

Impinging hoffa pad - removed
Grade 2 MCL injury
Partial tears to ACL
Contused meniscus
Microfractures to tibia
Bone marrow oedema to tibia

The recovery was ok, very painful for 2 weeks post op but not too bad now. First 4 weeks in the brace with the leg fixed straight and now 3 weeks in the brace set with flexion to 90 degrees. Physio has been slow but am making progress now. So frustrating that the other knee is hindering my progress though. I just hope that the OS wont be put off fixing it as I'm still recovering from the right knee surgery.
June 2010 - R knee TPF & Hoffa removal
Dec 2010 - R knee- Arthrofibrosis
Dec 2010 - L knee Myxoid degeneration of meniscus
Jan 2011 - R Knee 11 steroid injections & Synvisc1
Feb 11 - MUA & LOA
June 11- Steroid inj, EMG & nerve tests
Aug 11 - MUA & LOA
Feb 12 - R Knee denervation

Online Vickster

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Re: 5 weeks post op on right knee, now having problems with left knee
« Reply #6 on: August 05, 2010, 01:16:34 PM »
Ouch!

I would say wait until the right leg is better - if you can live with the meniscus issue (I did for 5 months).  Having one gammy knee is bad enough.  Did you actually have microfracture to the tibia or is that the bone bruising?  Is it a weight bearing surface?  personally I'd want to recover from one surgery before even considering another.

Are you in the UK?  I think some surgeons brace for certain injuries, while others don't.  The physio mentioned to me that I may wake up in a brace but not.  is the brace due to the soft tissue injuries?
Came off bike onto concrete 9/9/09
LK arthroscopy 8/2/10
2nd scope on 16/12/10
RK arthroscopy on 5/2/15
Lateral meniscus trim, excision of hoffa's fat pad, chondral stabilisation
LK scope 10.1.19 medial menisectomy, trochlea microfracture, general tidy up

Offline Stasha83

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Re: 5 weeks post op on right knee, now having problems with left knee
« Reply #7 on: August 05, 2010, 02:00:44 PM »
You lived with this for 5 months?! I've only done 1 week and I dont think I can cope much more. I can barely walk even with 2 crutches, I have to shuffle and avoid moving the left knee to much. Everytime I move in my sleep it wakes me up and the catching/grinding everytime I move makes me feel sick. I struggle to sit down and get up from sitting and getting up the stairs is becoming very difficult. I am in awe of you dealing with this for 5 months!

The other problem is the negative effect its having on the right knee as I cant progress with the rehab. I also cant start walking correctly because the left knee is preventing me from doing so. I would just prefer it to be fixed and then rehab them both although I know it is not that simple and there is no quick fix.

Umm I think the microfractures are related to the bone bruising, its all on the medial aspect of the tibia. The OS said the brace was mainly for the MCL and also to help straighten my leg as the knee had kind of moved towards the inside of my leg. Interestingly my knee is still looking like its not where it ought to be but my physio said that will straighten once the muscles get stronger. To be honest my understanding is not great, I did not ask enough questions but I certainly will tomorrow.

Yes, I'm in the UK. Luckily I have insurance so am not having to deal with NHS waiting lists. Are you in the UK?
June 2010 - R knee TPF & Hoffa removal
Dec 2010 - R knee- Arthrofibrosis
Dec 2010 - L knee Myxoid degeneration of meniscus
Jan 2011 - R Knee 11 steroid injections & Synvisc1
Feb 11 - MUA & LOA
June 11- Steroid inj, EMG & nerve tests
Aug 11 - MUA & LOA
Feb 12 - R Knee denervation

Online Vickster

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Re: 5 weeks post op on right knee, now having problems with left knee
« Reply #8 on: August 05, 2010, 02:12:38 PM »
Oh no, I have lived with this for 11 months altogether, was 5 months from injury to my first operation (I didn't have crutches at all, I just limped everywhere  :D )! The buckling, although not especially painful, was disconcerting!

Yes, I had bone bruising too, it is nasty!

Talk to your surgeon as see if there's anything that can be done - perhaps a proper sport support on the left knee might help?  I just kind of feel that you need to be able to walk on one leg ebfore having an op on the other, but if you can't anyhow, maybe it is the right thing to do.

Yes, I am in the UK.  Also have private insurance, unfortunately, the preferred next step cartilage repair is an experimental procedure and they are refusing to cover on that basis (also unavailable on the NHS)!  I see my OS again this evening to discuss other possible options that might be covered  :(

Came off bike onto concrete 9/9/09
LK arthroscopy 8/2/10
2nd scope on 16/12/10
RK arthroscopy on 5/2/15
Lateral meniscus trim, excision of hoffa's fat pad, chondral stabilisation
LK scope 10.1.19 medial menisectomy, trochlea microfracture, general tidy up

Offline Stasha83

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Re: 5 weeks post op on right knee, now having problems with left knee
« Reply #9 on: August 05, 2010, 02:48:10 PM »
11 months and no crutches!? You are an awful lot braver than me!

I would very much like to be able to walk normally on one leg! I have a feeling the OS is going to think along the same lines as you but as things are I cant walk on either leg and the left knee is getting worse by the day in terms of pain and mobility so im keeping my fingers crossed that he will take pity on me.

Good luck for your appointment tonight, sounds like you are in a difficult situation which must be very frustrating for you. Hopefully your OS will have an alternative that is covered by your insurance.
June 2010 - R knee TPF & Hoffa removal
Dec 2010 - R knee- Arthrofibrosis
Dec 2010 - L knee Myxoid degeneration of meniscus
Jan 2011 - R Knee 11 steroid injections & Synvisc1
Feb 11 - MUA & LOA
June 11- Steroid inj, EMG & nerve tests
Aug 11 - MUA & LOA
Feb 12 - R Knee denervation

Online Vickster

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  • SuperKNEEgeek
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  • Posts: 4627
  • Liked: 372
  • Neelie knee!
Re: 5 weeks post op on right knee, now having problems with left knee
« Reply #10 on: August 05, 2010, 03:06:25 PM »
Cheers!  It is indeed frustrating.

I used the crutches for a week post op and then on and off when out and about or as required for a couple more
Came off bike onto concrete 9/9/09
LK arthroscopy 8/2/10
2nd scope on 16/12/10
RK arthroscopy on 5/2/15
Lateral meniscus trim, excision of hoffa's fat pad, chondral stabilisation
LK scope 10.1.19 medial menisectomy, trochlea microfracture, general tidy up