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Knee Surgery

[color=#cc3366]Hi All,[/color]


[color=#cc3366]In about 6 weeks I'm having an arthroscopy for cartillage damage and meniscus tear repair as well as a lateral release on BOTH knees at once.[:o][/color]


[color=#cc3366]Does anyone have any advice for post surgery recovery plan as well as what to expect (eg, pain, time to recovery, how long till i can get back on my bike etc)?[/color]


[color=#cc3366]Thanks [&:][/color]


  • BarbsaramaBarbsarama Posts: 73
    [color=#cc3333]Oh yeh - I'm also petrified that I'm going to end up getting really fat! I'm currently exercising for 1 - 2 hours per day and therefore eating accordingly and then some (i LOVE food). Although i'm going to taper off the exercise to 2 X 20min cycles (not being allowed to run or take part in any competitions helps...) I am still worried that going from this amount of exercise each day to a few weeks lying on the couch eating will result in a disturbingly large picture... [/color]


    [color=#cc3333]I'm also worried that I will lose all motivation and may not be able to get back into this great sport...[/color]


    [color=#cc3333]Any ideas or tips?[/color]



  • When are you getting the surgery?

    How long are you off for?

    I have been living off voltarol for the last six months as the surgeon is desparate to do the same thing to me. (I was going to get it private but my wife spent the money on a new bathroom instead! so have to wait on the NHS)

    Got the appt in this morning for the preop consultation, but having qualified for FLorida so going to wait until December, so that I can be extra grumpy through Xmas.

  • BarbsaramaBarbsarama Posts: 73
    Hey! Are you getting both knees done? I am getting them done Aug 15th through insurance. A normal arthroscopy only needs a week off each knee but i'm getting the ligaments done on both knees too so dr said at least 3 weeks off work and i'm not sure how long off training. I've read on the internet that I will lose most of my muscle tone on my thighs and basically have to teach my legs which muscles to use etc...

    Has anyone else had anything similar?

  • chischis Posts: 94
    I had an arthroscopy for a torn cartilege on 12th March. By the end of one week I was able to walk well but was still a bit sore - my knee did feel as though it had been handled pretty roughly. Your recovery will be quicker the younger you are - I have had a fairly long running career so my knees have had a fair amount of punishment. However during the second and third weeks swimming and gentle cycling were very much in order remembering that you should do the re-hab exercises that the physio gives to you as religiously as possible - boring but beneficial in the long run. If your physio follow up is patchy it would be worthwhile seeing someone privately for some advice on exercises or search the net for help - try typing in "Knee Pain" and you will get some help.

    After about 4-6 weeks some gentle jogging on soft ground or possibly treadmill should be OK but I cant emphasise enough that we are all different and some recover better than others - but don't forget the swimming and cycling - by 4-6 weeks you should be able to push quite hard at these - just take care in the pool when turning and pushing off from the wall.

    After about 8 weeks you should be able to step the running up and move forward all being well. If it takes longer - then don't get frustrated a week or two more will be worth the wait if you can get back to pain free running.

    In my own case I managed to compete in the Age Group European Duathlon Championships in Edinburgh which was in mid June after an op in mid March and that included getting over a calf injury picked up during the post-op phase. Care is needed to avoid soft tissue injuries after your lay off.

    Hope this helps - good luck

  • BarbsaramaBarbsarama Posts: 73
    [color=#cc3366][8|]Hey Chris,[/color]

    [color=#cc3366]So I guess i can expect quite a long recovery period then, seeing as i am not only having cartilage repair and meniscus repair on both knees but also the lateral release (where the cut the lateral ligament and let it heal itself with scar tissue)... Hmmmm [/color] [:o]

    [color=#ff3366]Nice to know there is hope of getting back on the old horse (or should i say bike?)[/color]


    [color=#ff3366]Thanks [/color]
  • pigletpiglet Posts: 86
    Hi Barbsarama

    I feel for you big time! I had double knee surgery in Jan 2006 and had to go back for a second go on the left knee last oct- basically two ops in one year- v expensive!!

    I hate to say this but I think you have to be realistic about recovery times. I would say low impact exercise esp swimming very feasible in 2-3 weeks post op but high impact much longer than 6 weeks. I am still not running nearly 9 months later. I presume you will be in knee braces- to totally immobilise the knee afterwards. The longer you have to keep your legs straight the more muscle wasting you will get. I was shocked by how much tone I lost in just a week. I thrashed my knee pre-op to try to get as fit as poss before the op- theory being- well it's knackered anyway. As soon as my scars healed and stitches out I was back in the pool. I was supposed to keep my knees straight so I stuffed two pull buoys between my legs- one at thigh level the other at calf level and swam like that using my arms only. As soon as I was allowed I was doing aqua aerobics with the dear old ladies in the pool, and then swam normally as soon as allowed. I was told not to do breastroke or butterfly- just crawl and backstroke.

    I then progressed onto light spinning on my bike. Do you have a turbo trainer? If not I would really recommend one- you can spin in very low gears and not get tempted to muscle it out over a hill if on the road. Road bike with clips is better than a stationary bike like they have at the gym, as your knees will be in better alignment as the roadbike is set up for you- not a "generic person" at the gym.

    Walking on soft ground is great when you get to that stage- I am still at that stage though can walk uphill on the treadmill now and do fairly long hikes.

    Re the weight gain issue- I put on about 3kg over the year. Took it off again mainly by watching the diet. I found my body was used to high intake - like you, as I was doing so much exercise before the surgery and it took a while for it to re-adjust to the lower activity level. It didn't help that I went on holiday and was eating oput and staying with friends/family.

    Other things I found helpful- yoga, Pilates,physiotherapy (which your doctor will prescribe no doubt). Currently getting Bowen treatment as my pelvis isn't straight- probably the reason I had all the trouble to start with.

    Please email me if you have any questions or want a good moan.

  • hound doghound dog Posts: 293
    whats the cause of this type of injury? running? bad luck? Curious to know so if poss it can be avoided.
  • timclovertimclover Posts: 2
    I had a meniscectomy (?) following an arthroscopy for a torn meniscus and have suffered ever since on runs over 10K. Long term I recommend glucosamine and chrondrotin which I have found really improve things and more recently I have started using a patella band (the one from Nike) which is superb at preventing aching knees. The combined effect is pretty good at overcoming the lack of cartilage so much so that I am having a bash at half ironman this year and maybe the big one in 2008

  • BarbsaramaBarbsarama Posts: 73
    [color=#cc3366]Hey Houndog:[/color]


    [color=#cc3366]Contributing factors: several anatomical factors like genu valgum (knock knees), abnormal twisting of the femur (femoral torsion), and flat (pronated) feet contribute to the onset of the anterior knee pain. When the patella is not centred in the groove of the femur, there is an imbalance that results in increased pressures between articulating surfaces and subsequent accelerated wear and tear (patella malalignment). Most clinicians subscribe to the concept of patellar malalignment as a source of pain. Abnormal pressure on the patella may result in patellofemoral knee pain. If you are very active and are involved in sporting activities the pressure may be normally placed through the patella but in excessive amounts, an example would be jogging where as much as seven times ones body weight may be transmitted through the knee.Overuse, especially the pounding shocks absorbed during jogging and downhill running, previous knee injuries like the direct blow to the front of the knee, and obesity are all significant contributing factors.[/color]


  • BarbsaramaBarbsarama Posts: 73
    [color=#cc3366]Hey Piglet,[/color]


    [color=#cc3366]Thanks heaps for the advice! looks like i'll be partaking in a least favourite activity to keep fit then... Swimming is annoying... [;)][/color]


    [color=#cc3366]I am going to see if i can get a cheap turbo trainer off ebay as that sounds like a superb idea.[/color]


    [color=#cc3366]Thanks [/color][:)]

    [color=#cc3366]By the way... I can now no longer do the cycle part of the London Duathlon that i roped my boyfriend and his mate into doing as a team. If anyone wants to do a 20km ride in the London Duathlon... Can you please let me know as we're entered etc...[/color]
  • pigletpiglet Posts: 86
    Glad I was of some use Barbs. Re the turbo I bought the Cycleops Fluid2 - bit more expensive but can't fault it. Very quiet- in fact my bike's rear wheel makes more noise!

    I didn't bother with the fancy ones with computer etc attached as I have a combined cadence, odo on my bike anyway. But some are very techno- have HR monitors,odo, cadence even power output measurement, computer interface etc. I went for a sturdy model that will see me through this injury/surgery and also get used on those cold winter days/nights when venturing outside is for those of tougher stuff than me[:(]
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