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Author Topic: chondral shave and lateral release  (Read 2240 times)

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Offline JTB

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chondral shave and lateral release
« on: May 30, 2012, 05:53:42 PM »
Am (was) a very active middle-age male who is almost 5 months post left-side chondral shave for grade 3 degeneration of the patella and medial femoral condyle. After attempting to address what my GP diagnosed as patellar femoral syndrome, by using conservative methods  over a period of 6-7 months (rest and physical therapy), I was ready to be convinced by my OS that "trimming the crabmeat" was no big deal and that many like cases were up and about in 5 days or so, at least doing light activity. On one pre-op visit there was brief mention of the remote possibility of a lateral release. Apparently there were findings that warranted the procedure.

Well, here I am 5 months post-op and limping around on an almost always swollen knee (when it's not RICEd) and dealing with various levels of pain and tightness behind the kneecap (although no more crepitus). Also, my left-quad where the LR was performed still feels very weak and along its entire length on the outside, can cramp suddenly from time to time, completely locking up. After reading horror stories about chondral shaves and lateral releases, am looking for some studies or websites with a greater compilation of cases with potentially different (happy) endings! Anyway, any kindness or sage advice would be greatly appreciated.

Bike racer electing sport-med scope Jan 2011 for patella catch: shave patella, MFC and trochlea (with sneaky lateral release) Grade 3 findings. @ 1 year, CRPS, pain inhibition, muscle atrophy, osteopenia, sudden bilateral chondromalacia. in free-fall 2 1/2 years.
Today on Strava riding well.

Offline Maverick

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Re: chondral shave and lateral release
« Reply #1 on: May 30, 2012, 08:21:42 PM »
JTB, I am sorry but I don't have any websites or links to share but I did have a lateral release of the patella back in 2005.  The weakness that you describe in your quad is a normal result of the surgery.  I was told by my OS that once he goes into the knee and cuts the tendon for the LR, that you immediately lose about 40% of the strength of the quad.  This was true for me. I did PT for about 4 months (I can't remember exactly) and then continued to strengthen my knee on my own.  It took about a year for me to feel back to normal.  Are you / have you been working with a PT?

As for the pain, have you considered a knee brace to help provide support until you get some more strenght back?

My LR turned out great and was the correct thing to do for me.  I too have heard horror stories but keep up the work, RICE, and PT and you will get better.
1976 Arthoscopy, damaged cartilage
2007 Lateral release of the patella
2011 Meniscectomy and microfracture (grade 4)
2012 Debridement / Chondroplasty
2013 CRPS left knee

Thank you, Maverick

Offline JTB

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Re: chondral shave and lateral release
« Reply #2 on: May 31, 2012, 02:02:53 AM »
Thanks for the support and positive advice. Yes, am going to PT and it seems to be helping a lot. My physical therapist is very good. I have had a few profound (non-knee) injuries, but this knee injury/surgery/recovery experience is unlike mending bones, seprated shoulders, etc. There is something very unknown and very unsettling about the whole experience. I have much respect and empathy for the suffering and courage that is represented in a lot of the posts here. Thanks again and I'll keep plugging away at the recovery.
Bike racer electing sport-med scope Jan 2011 for patella catch: shave patella, MFC and trochlea (with sneaky lateral release) Grade 3 findings. @ 1 year, CRPS, pain inhibition, muscle atrophy, osteopenia, sudden bilateral chondromalacia. in free-fall 2 1/2 years.
Today on Strava riding well.

Offline rob43

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Re: chondral shave and lateral release
« Reply #3 on: June 03, 2012, 01:37:08 PM »
i had a lateral release and femoral micro fracture 9months ago i,m far from perfect but starting to get back on my feet took about 8months before i started to do things again, my left leg is still very weak but its slowly on the mend!
good luck with your recovery

Offline TwoBadKneesUSA

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Re: chondral shave and lateral release
« Reply #4 on: June 04, 2012, 04:08:41 PM »
It can take 12-18 months to get full quad strength back and IT band syndrome can set it quite easily.  Keep working at it, all you describe is quite normal really at this point.  I had a PT tell me that a LR recovery can be just as hard as an ACLr.
'83 lt knee scope
'88 lt knee LR
'89 rt knee LR (6 mos. after left)
'05 rt knee scope (clean up)
7/5/07 - scope, LR left, right clean
3/19/08 - LR failed, Supartz failed
http://www.kneeguru.co.uk/KNEEtalk/index.php?topic=47974.0
8/21/08 - new OS apt
8/5/09 - TTT, LR, PFJR sched.

Offline Kwal57

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Re: chondral shave and lateral release
« Reply #5 on: June 06, 2012, 06:07:56 PM »
I feel you. I had the same procedure done 15 months ago. my downfall is I fell right on the knee I had the surgery on 5 months ago. my healing has definitely been altered. in PT for 2m now, possibly looking at an exploratory scope, and to shave down the cartilage again due to trauma. At 5 months post op, I was limping a little bit, but was doing all daily functions with minimal pain. but hang in there because it does get better. before the fall, the LR/shave made life a bunch easier.
 8)
-K
*Kay*
'Runners' knee > Lateral Release 3/11
Minor Meniscus tear > clip 3/11
Fall on bad knee 1/12
PT 3/12-6/12
MRI > Cartilage missing = Cortisone + PT 5/12
Arthroscopy > cartilage missing, meniscus tear, & misalignment 8/12
TTO/ACI 10/13
Healing....for now :)
instability :/