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Author Topic: Operation Note Confusion - Can Anyone Help?  (Read 678 times)

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Offline MrsM

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Operation Note Confusion - Can Anyone Help?
« on: June 18, 2012, 07:08:17 PM »
I have managed to get a copy of my surgeon's operation note which says:-

"Arthroscopy - normal apart from retro-patella surface around the medial retro-patella facet there was an area of grade III degenerative changes and this was resected with arthrowand"

Three years down the line, I still don't really understand what is wrong with my knee or what pain I am to expect with it. The only clear thing the surgeon said was that a knee replacement was almost certain in the future. Any ideas what all the medical jargon means?

The other puzzling thing is that nothing could be seen on the MRI scan I had prior to surgery. Has anyone else had knee problems discovered in surgery that couldn't be seen on their MRI?

Offline crankerchick

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Re: Operation Note Confusion - Can Anyone Help?
« Reply #1 on: June 18, 2012, 07:43:00 PM »
Hi. It just means you had grade III wearing of the cartilage behind the patella. This is the part of the knee cap that sits on the femur. The cartilage was removed and probably smoothed out.

The surgery didn't "fix" your knee, it just made smooth and/or removed what was jagged behind the patella. Part of getting to the nitty gritty is for a doctor to figure out what caused (is causing) the damage behind the patella. It could just be degenerative with time or it could be poor tracking of the patella, causing it to rub the femur and wear down the cartilage.

I don't believe it is too uncommon that damage behind the patella is found during an arthroscopy that didn't show on the MRI.
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Offline Vickster

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Re: Operation Note Confusion - Can Anyone Help?
« Reply #2 on: June 18, 2012, 07:53:42 PM »
I had Grade III wear on the lateral facet of the patella that didn't know on the MRI either - similarly tidied up a couple of years ago, seems ok

You said it was 3 years ago...is the knee bothering you?  If not, I wouldn't worry about it :)
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 MrsM

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Re: Operation Note Confusion - Can Anyone Help?
« Reply #3 on: June 18, 2012, 08:43:53 PM »
Thanks for the responses guys!

No further action was taken by the surgeon or GP after surgery so what happened remains a mystery!

Vickster, when you say your knee seems ok after surgery, do you have any ongoing problems with pain etc? I still get pain behind the patella if I do too much walking or anything with real impact, and it also aches and throbs loads when the weather is cold and damp. I am guessing this is just part of having a knee problem, but I don't really know what level of pain (if any) is normal three years on. I was told a knee replacement was likely in the future, but at 27, I am hoping it is a long way off!

Thanks :)

Offline Vickster

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Re: Operation Note Confusion - Can Anyone Help?
« Reply #4 on: June 18, 2012, 08:55:09 PM »
I do have problems with my knee still unfortuantely, but nothing to do with my patella - pain due to an osteochondral defect on the weight bearing area of my lateral femoral condydle and extensive softening on the tibia opposite.  The femoral hole caused by trauma, the tibia and presumably the patella as I am knock kneed I think

The only weird thing is that my knee pops when I bend and straighten like a suction cup, but no pain.

I would avoid anything that makes it sore as much as possible - work with a physio , and see what you should avoid (like leg extensions, lunges, squats potentially).  You are many years off a knee replacement but as others have said, it is worth finding out why you have the damage at such a young age :)
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















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