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Author Topic: Partial meniscectomy recovery time  (Read 466 times)

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Offline Justaprettyfacexox

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Partial meniscectomy recovery time
« on: July 25, 2019, 03:36:57 AM »
Hi all! I am new here! I’ve been searching for a place to discuss my knee issues with people in similar situations for about 2 weeks and finally stumbled in this site!

TLDR; has partial meniscectomy on July 12th. Feel like I am where I was pre injury. No physical therapy as of yet. How long did it take for you to get ROM back and walk without a limp? Also basic activities like walking and stairs?

Here’s my story:
Fell on a trampoline when I was 12 (28 now). Came down hard on my left knee and heard a loud snap. Was transported to the hospital and told to visit an orthopedic. Visited an orthopedic and he said I most likely tore/stretched some ligaments and put me in an immobilizer for 6-8 weeks with no physical therapy. I recovered nicely.

Skip to a few years later and I would have frequent sensations of my knee feeling “out of place” or “off”. It would also give out at random times (mostly going down the stairs) causing me to fall and have swelling and stiffness for a few weeks. Visited another orthopedist and he told me my ligaments were very “lax” as I can hyper extend my knees and wrists. He said it was a miracle I could even walk without my knees dislocating. Anyways, he just told me to keep off it and immobilize it and it would get better, eventually..

June of this year, I took yet another fall down the stairs. This time my knee “cracked” about as hard as it did the first time and I knew I was in big trouble. Visited the ER who told me to follow up with an orthopedic. So this time I found the best ones in my area. After what seemed like the 85th fall I FINALLY had an MRI done. Which revealed my ACL has been torn for an indeterminate amount of time. I also had a displaced tear of the posterior horn of the medial meniscus and a tear in the lateral.

My doctor decided he wanted to do both the ACL and meniscectomy in one shot. But I have a huge cruise coming up in the beginning of September so I bargained with him. He said “okay let me do the meniscus since it is locking your knee and we can do the ACL later since you probably originally tore it when you were 12”

I had surgery July 12th, so roughly 12 days ago. It went well, what he said would be a half hour turned into an hour and a half but I guess there were no issues. He said I would be walking out crutch free and probably better than I walked in.. here’s my dilemma ...

I did not walk out crutch free. I think I was weak from the anesthesia. I did not have any pain and only took ibuprofen when I left the hospital. I weened myself off crutches by the 3rd day. I attempted the stairs like a normal person (up , not down) and felt good.. this was Monday. Tuesday I felt amazing, was finally walking without a limp. Today I am back to where I was. Limping with mild discomfort I think from swelling. I feel like my ROM is the same as it was before the surgery, not better.

Doc said he decides at follow up if physical therapy is needed. I’m just wondering if I’m where I’m supposed to be progress wise? I can only bend about 90° of flexion and I can’t quite hyperextend like I could pre injury. I hope I didn’t mess anything up either.

Anyone else in a similar situation? What was your healing time like? When did you get back to basics like being able to walk without a limp?No swelling? No discomfort? Full flexion? TIA!

Offline Vickster

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Re: Partial meniscectomy recovery time
« Reply #1 on: July 25, 2019, 08:51:04 AM »
In reality, for most people 3-6 months is realistic to be properly recovered from a partial menisectomy, some will be quicker (younger folk tend to recover quicker) some longer, there’s no usual and no right or wrong, all different

90 minutes sounds long for just meniscus trimming. What else did the surgeon do?

I’d get onto PT ASAP, land and pool if you can. Presumably you’re already doing the usual post op exercises like quad sets, heel slides, leg raises, maybe wall slides, clamshells, sit to stand etc? If not, get into the doctor ASAP and get referred.

Make sure you’re icing a few times a day and elevating the knee above your heart.
Are your stitches out if you had any?

You’re still in the very post op stage, any knee surgery is very traumatic even if the incisions are tiny. Surgeons do not yield the arthroscope and instruments gently!

Make sure when elevating the leg is supported under calf and ankle not the knee as you want it straight.

Good luck, I’m sure you’ll be ok for your cruise even if you have to sit out sone excursions and lie by the pool. Minimise stairs if you can, take a good knee support and have access to ice to use at the end of the day

When you have your ACL done, be prepared for 9-12 months minimum to recover fully  and work very hard at the rehab with an experienced PT
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 RGB

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Re: Partial meniscectomy recovery time
« Reply #2 on: July 25, 2019, 10:17:20 AM »
Sensible advice from Vickster as always. I have had a partial meniscectomy (about 20 years older than you) and I can tell you that the recovery time is not measured in weeks. There are lots of reasons, including the knee recovering from the trauma and just getting used to a slightly new alignment. So I wouldn't be too alarmed by some swelling after you've pushed it harder than usual for a day or two. It should recover in time. You do need to be careful though and not do this too often. After an arthroscopy the fluid in the knee does not have it's usual viscosity and therefore does not lubricate the knee very well. This doesn't recover until about the 6 week mark. So you need to do enough but not too much. There are well established protocols for recovery from this operation and you should make sure you get appropriate professional advice. Hope this helps. Good luck.

Offline Justaprettyfacexox

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Re: Partial meniscectomy recovery time
« Reply #3 on: July 25, 2019, 02:23:48 PM »
Thanks for the advice guys!

I was given no instruction after surgery on how to elevate the knee, so I had it elevated from my knee to my calf. I try to keep it straight as much as possible. I can straighten the leg which is I guess better than before.

I am not doing any of the exercises mentioned as, like I said I was not given instructions. I currently still have my stitches in. I will be getting them removed on Monday the 29th and hopefully the doc will give me orders for physical therapy.

I did plan on wearing a brace on vacation even if it’s one I purchase myself in case my knee gets fatigued. I will be doing a lot of walking both on and off the boat.

To help with the fluid in my knee, doc recommended I take glucosamine and chondroitin. So I have been doing that since about 2 days post op. As far as surgery, he said I did have some arthritis and he was going to clear that out so maybe that’s what took so long? I don’t remember anything of what he said to me after surgery because I was still woozy from anesthesia and pain meds. All he told my fiancé was that the surgery went well...