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Author Topic: What is that poking out under my knee cap?  (Read 23013 times)

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Offline beansf

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What is that poking out under my knee cap?
« on: January 01, 2013, 01:26:16 AM »
I am new to this forum and posting this in hopes that someone cares to offer an opinion on my situation. I am a 40 year old female.

Prior to my injury/condition, I was taking 2 thirty minute walks/day M-F and using the elliptical 75 min/day 7 days a week.

In June, I was out walking and got a pain in my knee (under the knee cap on the outside, radiating down my shin). After a few weeks of resting and icing it didn’t go away, I went to my family doctor. He suggested I get fit for shoes to correct pronation and fhat I continue to rest and go to Physical Therapy.. After a few weeks of resting/icing/Advil, things seemed better and I went back to normal activity. At this point, I felt my shoes were adequate and I didn’t want to take the time for PT.

At the beginning of October, it was flaring up again and I noticed something that looks like a bone sticking out under my knee cap. It just didn’t seem natural so I emailed the doctor. He did an xray. The only result he gave me at this point was: “No fractures or dislocations”. I also went to the Physical Therapist. By the time I could get in to see her (about 3 weeks) my knee was feeling pretty good again. She told me I needed to cut way back on my activity. She said if I didn’t slow down, I would be in to have my knee cleaned out. She mentioned chondro malacia. (I have had that tell-tale grinding sound in my other knee for about 7 years.) She gave me some exercises, but presented it to me more like, “Here’s some things besides cardio that you can do.”. She didn’t think there was any problem with muscle weakness, etc. Nor did she say that the exercises would actually help my condition.

So, I cut my activity back to 2 fifteen minute walks/day M-F and only thirty minutes on the elliptical on 5 days of the week.

Unfortunately, the pain persisted. By the time my fifteen minutes of walking was up, I could feel swelling and stiffness and pain. I was frustrated by my limitations. The knot was sticking out worse than ever despite my daily icing. I couldn’t kneel for even a second and having my knee bent at too severe of an angle (like when squatting) was a killer.

So, at the end of November, I contacted my doctor again. This time he mentioned “spur formation” on that original x-ray. He suggested coming in for a cortisone shot. So I went and had that, but honestly I don’t think it helped any. I went and got the suggested shoes and inserts. They seem to help a little. I was down to going only half way around the block (about 8 min. of walking) without pain prior to this last visit. With shoes and shot, I can make it all the way around the block, but that is all. I asked the doctor if I could ever expect to recover from this and he said “Yes, once we fix your posture.”

Well, it has been four weeks of wearing the new shoes and I haven’t really seen much improvement. Strangely, since I started wearing the new shoes, now I feel pain more towards the inside of my knee, under the kneecap rather than the outside. I still have the bone (or whatever it is) sticking out and continue to be frustrated by my condition. I think a 40 year old should have more mobility than I have right now. I have put on weight since I decreased my activity (because I haven’t slowed down on the holiday chowing) which I know is harder for my knee, but not being able to be very active depresses me. I am due to go to Disneyland in March and am wondering how the heck I am going to get around. My husband is going to feel like he is married to a senior citizen.

I am not sure if I should contact the doctor again or not. I wonder if I should be seen by a bone specialist, but not sure how to get referred in my HMO (Kaiser Permanente). I still haven’t gotten any direct answer as to what that thing is sticking out of my knee. Does anyone here share a similar experience?

If anyone has any opinions to offer, I would appreciate it. Thanks!

Offline The KNEEguru

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Re: What is that poking out under my knee cap?
« Reply #1 on: January 01, 2013, 04:07:41 PM »
It sounds as if the medics are not altogether sure what the problem is but that they feel that poor mechanics may be contributing. If the quads muscle is weak or the posture (especially the alignment of the foot) is poor, then the patella may track abnormally and this may cause pain under the patella.

A bone spur visible on X-ray is not always painful, but of course there are bone spurs that are painful. Does the tender part feel bony, or more bouncy, like perhaps a meniscal cyst?
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Offline beansf

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Re: What is that poking out under my knee cap?
« Reply #2 on: January 01, 2013, 04:17:36 PM »
I hate to touch it because it feels creepy, but it definitely looks and feels bony.