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Author Topic: Knee Injury - Help/Advice Appreciated!  (Read 1348 times)

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Offline Despoil0405

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Knee Injury - Help/Advice Appreciated!
« on: August 14, 2010, 03:47:14 PM »
Hello everyone!  :)

I just joined in an effort to seek more knowledge regarding recent difficulties with both knees. I'm currently twenty years old.

In January of 2010 I injured both knees. The Orthopedic believed the cause to be from overuse between running as a hobby and my job at Costco. I ran for 45 minutes every other day on a treadmill. With regards to Costco I had to do stocking which of course involves pulling heavy pallets, bending, lifting, etc.

Both knees made a crack/popping noise when bending that could be heard from across the room. I was having difficulty bearing weight on the left or right knee at times and couldn't lift heavy items. By heavy items I mean anything heavier than around forty pounds.

They did an MRI and diagnosed me with Patellar Mal-alignment and Patellofemoral Chondromalacia. I was given simple bands to put on both knees for additional knee support and medicine to reduce inflammation. This treatment worked out great for me until...

In June of 2010 after a strenuous weekend at work, I returned home and felt fine. I was tired and didn't have to work the following day so I went to sleep. Upon waking up I was unable to walk on either knee for an hour or two. After that I was able to walk fine, but with a severe limp and pain.

I returned to the Orthopedic and the doctor seemed concerned. She suggested cortisone shots in both knees in the hopes this would relieve the pain and strengthen the muscles. I experienced a slight reduction in pain after the shots. This pain reduction only lasted roughly three weeks and I was still limping and in pain. Didn't notice any muscle strength changes.

So I returned to the Orthopedic again and she prescribed J-Brace Patellar Stabilizers and a new set of MRI's. So I wore the braces during periods of activity. I noticed that the crack and popping noise from bending my knees was finally eliminated. My knees felt more sturdy as well.

The results of the new MRI's were identical to the previous set. But my condition is deteriorating. In June I was able to run on the treadmill for forty five minutes at a time with no pain, cracking or popping from the knees.

Present day and I am unable to walk a quarter of a mile without experiencing extreme pain and needing to sit down. The best description I can give is that my knees seem to weaken over time when they bear weight and my knees feel unstable. Even the J-Brace doesn't alleviate these problems anymore. My knees don't pop or crack anymore and that slight discomfort is gone thanks to the braces, but sadly that's about it. All of this is of course paired with pain. I've also noticed that if I straighten my legs completely now, they begin to shake with extreme pain radiating from the knees. (Definitely a new symptom)  :-\

My Orthopedic is now suggesting a lateral release for both knees if physical therapy shows no results. I have been doing the strengthening exercises at home since June, with no improvement whatsoever. My doctor doesn't seem very hopeful for the physical therapy, so it seems like she believes surgery is the only option left. I am going to do two to three weeks of physical therapy to see if any improvements are observed.

Any advice and/or suggestions would be welcomed. Should I get a second opinion on the surgery? Did she skip any possible treatment options? I have read some horror stories about lateral releases, such as the knee weakening even further after the surgery and extreme pain that you have to live for the rest of your life. Do these stories have any merit?

Thanks  ???

Offline BadHairDay

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Re: Knee Injury - Help/Advice Appreciated!
« Reply #1 on: August 14, 2010, 04:43:43 PM »
My Orthopedic is now suggesting a lateral release for both knees

 :o :o :o :o :o :o :o :o :o :o :o :o :o :o :o :o :o :o :o :o :o :o :o :


Offline Despoil0405

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Re: Knee Injury - Help/Advice Appreciated!
« Reply #2 on: August 14, 2010, 04:57:04 PM »
My Orthopedic is now suggesting a lateral release for both knees

 :o :o :o :o :o :o :o :o :o :o :o :o :o :o :o :o :o :o :o :o :o :o :o



I had thought the surgery option was ridiculous myself. My jaw hit the floor and I couldn't speak for a few minutes.

Thanks for all the information BadHairDay. I appreciate it.

As suggested by BadHairDay I'm posting my location. I currently live in Fredericksburg, Virginia. I'm currently seeing Brian T. McDermott, M.D. which is the best knee doctor in the immediate area to my knowledge.

I'd be willing to travel anywhere in Virginia or Maryland for the right specialist.

Oh and if anyone is knowledgeable in this particular area, are there any treatment options that my current doctor missed? Excluding surgery that is.

Thanks
« Last Edit: August 14, 2010, 05:10:26 PM by Despoil0405 »

Offline BadHairDay

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Re: Knee Injury - Help/Advice Appreciated!
« Reply #3 on: August 20, 2010, 06:48:23 PM »
hi despoil sorry hadnt seen youre post
maybe someone will jump in with suggestions of a good doctor in your area sorry im not familiar with that region
did you change doctors then because you kept saying she but youre doctor is a brian

Offline Lottiefox

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Re: Knee Injury - Help/Advice Appreciated!
« Reply #4 on: August 20, 2010, 07:06:50 PM »
Hi and welcome from a fellow knackered kneecapper,

Before anyone does anything surgical (and it may be that a surgical option is the one you eventualy go for) you need to check out what is causing the chondromalcia and look at underlying patterns of movement. An MRI will show general wear and tear and areas of cartilage damage and to some degree how the knee cap "sits" in its groove but prior to ANYONE chopping you you need full length X rays to look at leg alignment, plus scans ideally of the kneecap tracking through various degrees of flexion and how the kneecap moves with quads tensed and relaxed. This will show any difficulties with tilt, shift, location of the patella tendon, height of the patella etc.

I can only urge you to find an OS who knows patellas, not just knees. Some surgeons may be brilliant at a cruciate reconstruction but fail to understand the patella femoral workings. Invest some time in finding the right person and you will find a far better long term outcome. I'm in the UK so I can't help with specifics I'm afraid. One other thing I find does help my kneecap pain is proper stretching and foam rolling of tight structures on the outside of my leg. Way off being a cure but helps the fel of the knee. I also avoid anything open chain in terms of exercise and focus on things like leg lifts, SLRs etc along with plenty of work for the glutes and hips too.

I hope you can find someone to help - don't have the LR unless it is indicated. (and thats for tilt only). Do you have any instability in the patellas?

Good luck

Lottie  :)
Bilateral patella OA since 2009, no surgeries.
Euflexxa working well x3 to current
Right forefoot CRPS post fusion surgery 2011
Refusing to let the ailing parts stop me....

Offline DaTexanBoy

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Re: Knee Injury - Help/Advice Appreciated!
« Reply #5 on: August 20, 2010, 10:27:27 PM »
My only advice is, dont get any more shots in your knees. I had to get them all the time when I was in the military, and now it is coming back to haunt me. I now have bone fragments floating around in my knees due to these shots and am currently about to get my 8th knee surgery (#6 on left knee) on September 30th and I'm only 32.

The doctor told me that the shots do more harm than good. Of course they give immediate (sp?) relief but are harmful in the long run.

Second opinions never hurt. Knowing what I know now, hold off as long as you can from getting knee surgery. Hope this helped some.

Jeremy