Author Topic: Left Knee Torn Meniscus Diagnosis  (Read 1423 times)

Night Wing

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Re: Left Knee Torn Meniscus Diagnosis
« Reply #15 on: November 02, 2018, 11:28:01 AM »
I just received a call from my surgeon's office. Good news is, I didn't tear my meniscus. No cartilage damage either. However, looks like there is a little arthritis in the knee so when I twisted my left knee, it aggravated the arthritis in the knee.

So I'm due for some shot (or shots) in the knee on Tuesday, Nov 6th at 10:50 am and since the knee is still slightly swollen, if the knee is still slightly swollen when I see my surgeon on the 6th, he suspects some fluid in the knee and they will drain it off. So I'm hoping the slight swelling dissipates between now and the 6th where I won't have to have the knee drained.

Since I'm terrified of hypodermic needles, I'm not looking forward to the 6th.
SUP Sports Hammer: 8'11" x 31" x 4" @ 140 Liters
SUP Sports One World: 11'1" x 30" x 4.5" @ 173 Liters

Night Wing

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Re: Left Knee Torn Meniscus Diagnosis
« Reply #16 on: November 07, 2018, 09:48:03 AM »
Another update.

Looks like my good news was a little premature. Saw my surgeon yesterday and the person who read the MRI on my left knee, who was "not" my orthopedic surgeon, missed something.

My surgeon showed me the results of the MRI and there is a slight anomaly in the meniscus. My surgeon explained to me that anomaly is a "partial tear" on the inside of the meniscus and not on the outside of the meniscus. The inside partial tear will not repair itself. It will slowly keep tearing until it reaches the outside of the meniscus.

I put a total of 28 hours of rehab on the knee from Friday afternoon until yesterday morning (Tuesday) at 9:00 am. Since I have 100% mobility in the left knee and only feel a little soreness when I do one specific exercise, I didn't have to get a needle in the joint.

Instead of 1000 MG's of etodolac (two, 500 MG tablets per day), to control any swelling, I am now supposed to take just one, 500 MB tablet and when I finish those tablets, to start putting on a prescription topical gel named, Diclofenac Sodium 1% as needed. When this gel no longer works, then I'll get a shot in the knee joint.

When this shot wears off and the pain returns, I'll get a second shot. Eventually, the partial tear will come to the outside of the meniscus and then my insurance companies will allow the scope procedure to repair the meniscus.

In cases like mine, some insurance companies like to see "small steps leading up to surgeries". Since my left knee was feeling real good this morning, I took my 11'1" One World sup out on our subdivision's largest private lake for a "one hour flat water paddling session". The water was 75 degrees F and the air temperature was 83 degrees F. My spirits were up and it felt great doing this paddling session since I had been off the water for 6 weeks. My left knee felt no pain either.

A cold front is coming in tomorrow, Thursday with rain and lots of wind. Friday's high temperature is only going to be 57 degrees F with Saturday's morning's low temperature of 45 degrees F. Since I don't wear a wetsuit, this is why I wanted to get in today's flat water paddling session in.
SUP Sports Hammer: 8'11" x 31" x 4" @ 140 Liters
SUP Sports One World: 11'1" x 30" x 4.5" @ 173 Liters

ninja tuna

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Re: Left Knee Torn Meniscus Diagnosis
« Reply #17 on: November 07, 2018, 11:36:34 AM »
That is BS.  I have just gone through the same thing. Literally had surgery 10 days ago. Insurance company wanted me to do 6 weeks of therapy.  Called the insurance and said this is a joke and useless and will make no difference. They told me to have the doctor call them. He did. Dr told me it was literally a 1 minute phone call and then I got my surgery. 

If you have any questions, let me know. Gotta run to PT now but will be back later.

oceanAddict

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Re: Left Knee Torn Meniscus Diagnosis
« Reply #18 on: November 08, 2018, 05:10:23 PM »
Huh, something in the air with those left knees..

3-4 weeks ago I managed overwork my knee and it was bothering me for a few days but not so that I would call my PCP. I SUP surfed more than usual, played basketball and ran so I thought  _ I might give it a rest some ice and ibuprofen and all gonna be OK. Then another weekend came and waves were so good I could not resist to go out. Initially, I thought it's probably not a good idea as the left knee was a bit swollen and I had a hard time to paddle on my knees. But eventually fun and waves made me forgot about it. Next morning was really bad: I thought I might pull something in it so I wore a compression sleeve for a day. By the end of the day, the ankle got so swollen that I went to the urgent care clinic the next morning. The doc on duty said - there's nothing serious, you overworked it - and sleeve contributed to the swollen ankle. No Xray no noting. Just ibuprofen, keep the leg up and take it easy.  It's been almost 2 weeks and it's still painful, cannot do squat, climbing stairs up especially with the kiddo in arms is painful and still, have some puffiness in around the patella.
 
So I'm not sure what to do. One one hand it bothers me and I cannot do lot of things, on another I don't wanna be the guy who is running to ER with a splinter. Should I go it my PCP and let him decide? Give it another week? Try to find knee specialists?
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Night Wing

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Re: Left Knee Torn Meniscus Diagnosis
« Reply #19 on: November 08, 2018, 09:36:49 PM »
That is BS.  I have just gone through the same thing. Literally had surgery 10 days ago. Insurance company wanted me to do 6 weeks of therapy.  Called the insurance and said this is a joke and useless and will make no difference. They told me to have the doctor call them. He did. Dr told me it was literally a 1 minute phone call and then I got my surgery.

Since I have a partial tear on the inside of the meniscus, if my surgeon goes in with a scope now, there is nothing for him to see to repair. Partial tears of the meniscus are different than a full blown torn meniscus.

It is hard to explain so I'll try to make an analogy.

Think of a piece of flat paper which is 1" in thickness. If you tear the paper, it will be torn on the edge of the paper to make the tear so the tear is easily seen. Now think of the paper with a slight cut on the inside of the 1" thickness so it is buried in the paper but shows no outward appearance on the surface of the paper.

In order to repair this type of tear (partial, not seen) the scope is useless. It would take the "long cut" on the right inside of my left knee and this is something he does not want to do since it is a long procedure and there is a good chance of "doing more harm than good" because he would have to guess where the hidden tear is inside the tissue of the meniscus because again, the partial tear is hidden.

Bad for him and worse for me at my age. He has been doing this type of surgery for 33 years and he has done both my right and left shoulders. Since I have 100% mobility, the swelling has disappeared and I've got no pain when I walk. Everything he told me would happen with my knee has happened up to this point. This is why MRI's are so good at seeing things inside of the body. The partial tear will slowly tear and eventually come to the the surface of the meniscus.

When I asked him when the tear will be on the surface of the meniscus, he told me "my left knee will definitely tell me". This is why he DOES NOT want me to "baby the knee". Just go about my life and when I notice my left knee talking to me, then I'll have the surgery.

Here's is another analogy with the same results basically.

I have a very small cataract in each of my left and right eyes which I never knew I had. If you look very closely at each eye, you can't see any white colored cloudiness in my eyes. But my ophthalmologist can see them with his equipment. He told me when the cataracts get large enough, he will surgically replace the lenses in both eyes with new lenses but it will be his decision when he operates on both of my eyes, one eye at a time.

Usually, cataract surgery on one eye takes about two weeks to heal and then I'll have the other eye done two weeks later.

SUP Sports Hammer: 8'11" x 31" x 4" @ 140 Liters
SUP Sports One World: 11'1" x 30" x 4.5" @ 173 Liters

Night Wing

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Re: Left Knee Torn Meniscus Diagnosis
« Reply #20 on: November 08, 2018, 09:54:25 PM »
@ oceanAddict

There is only one way to tell if something is wrong in your knee and that involves getting an MRI done. The ankle is another problem that might be related to your knee or not.

By the time I saw my orthopedic surgeon (OS), it had been four weeks of pain and swelling on the right inside of my left knee. In the surgeon's office, the physical knee exam was no picnic and this is why he ordered an MRI for me.

After the physical knee exam, he suspected a torn meniscus, but he didn't suspect a partial tear of the meniscus. The two are different from one another and an MRI is the only way to confirm the difference between the two since they both produce the same symptoms.

BTW, my MRI showed I severely strained my medial collateral ligament too. My bone x-rays showed some bone on bone with a little arthritis in the knee which hasn't bothered me (yet). My OS told me anyone who is 50 years of age or older, they have arthritis some place in their knees even though they don't feel it (yet). It's the aging process.
SUP Sports Hammer: 8'11" x 31" x 4" @ 140 Liters
SUP Sports One World: 11'1" x 30" x 4.5" @ 173 Liters

ninja tuna

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Re: Left Knee Torn Meniscus Diagnosis
« Reply #21 on: November 09, 2018, 05:44:04 AM »
Hey nightwing,

I was basically calling BS on the insurance thing.  I had to fight with mine and it did not put me in a good mood.

I am not understanding your explanation of your tear completely.  To explain mine.

As you know, for simplicity sake, your meniscus is basically a donut  with the inside being thin and getting thicker to the outside.  Mine was a flap tear on the inside where I had one flap folded over one way and one the other.  The MRI just showed a flap tear that only went about 10-20% the width of the meniscus. Once the doc was in there he showed me the pictures of 2 flaps. My doc told me mine was an easy fix.  That inner, thinner part does not get blood flow so to repair it was basically useless.  What he did was basically shave that part down and clean in it up. He has 100% confidence that I will be back to the crazy active lifestyle I  live.  Luckily it was just 2 holes in my knee with 4 stitches total.  I had surgery on a Friday. Laid around all weekend and was back at work walking around on Monday. Granted I was limping pretty good but my job is active. Each day the limp got less and less.  My doc showed me all the pictures from inside my knee and said all my cartilage, ligaments and other internals looked good with no warnings of other problems.



I don't know how I did mine. I had an active couple of weeks with surfing and a lot of sparring in in kickboxing, and all the other exercise things I do back  in February.  One morning I woke up and had some pain behind my knee cap.  Kept going hard for another few days and it got worse so everything got put on hold. I could not squat with out pain. I was still mobile without too many problems.  Then work happened and I just put it aside because I had no real problems. 100% mobility like you. My job was supposed to finish up 2 months ago but is still ongoing. Was going to take care of it then. Couldn't. One day about a month ago when I went to stand up from my desk, it locked up kinda and gave me a good limp for a few days. That was when I said I am going to get this done now.

I  figured it was a meniscus tear from researching what my problems were.  Just when you start doing that and seeing the different types, that is where it became over my head. I was correct and luckily after reading about all the different types, some of which are quite bad. I was happy mine was pretty minor. ELATED actually.

Then the insurance battle started 2 days before my surgery, the insurance company denied the surgery and wanted me to do 6 weeks of physical therapy.  After the simple and easy explanation from above from my doc, any one with half a brain can realize that physical therapy is not going to help this. That was the fight with the insurance company. My doc called them and told me it was literally a 1 minute conversation and the surgery was approved.

I wish you the best of luck in dealing with your knee. 

Night Wing

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Re: Left Knee Torn Meniscus Diagnosis
« Reply #22 on: November 09, 2018, 10:55:05 AM »
@ ninja tuna

I can walk, I can kneel, I can climb stairs, I can squat, I can cross my legs underneath me sitting indian style around a campfire. All with no pain. The MRI shows the partial tear inside the meniscus, but it is so small the MRI had trouble seeing it. This is why the person who read the MRI first at the imaging site, missed it. My surgeon didn't miss it.

My pain and swelling is not due to the partial tear. My pain came from the severely strained medial ligament. As the ligament was healing, it wasn't healing right. The ligament took a set and when I tried to walk, the pain made me hobble along. This is why a torn meniscus was the prime suspect. The meniscus is underneath the ligament.

My surgeon called me at my home at noon last Friday, Nov 2nd and told me to start doing the stretching exercises for my left knee and the knee exercises are targeting the ligament. Because I was going to be in his office on Nov 6th to see him, I was going to have the same knee exam to see how much mobility I had in the knee from when I first saw him on Oct 18th.

I have 100% mobility. But I'm still doing those stretching exercises at my home to help the ligament heal. My sessions are Monday, Wednesday and Friday with two, one hour sessions per day. I start at 7am and finish at 8am. Then at 2pm, I do the second session and finish at 3pm. If I'm feeling "bold and frisky", I'll do another session at 9pm and finish at 10pm.

And come next Tuesday, Nov 13th, I'll no longer be taking Etodolac because the ligament will be healed. If I have some pain, but no swelling, that is the partial tear "expanding" inside the meniscus. I've got the topical gel to keep that pain under control. Once the gel does not relieve the pain, then my surgeon told me to see him, "asap" and he and I will go from there.

But the partial tear may not expand for a long time. It's just a waiting game to see what it does. This is why I was told NOT to "baby my knee". The only restriction I'm under; no running, no jumping and no changing of directions quickly (like when I play basketball with my next door neighbor at our subdivision's commons area since the commons has an outdoor regulation size basketball court).

In closing, my surgeon told me since 1985, he has only seen three partial tears "inside" a meniscus and mine is the third one. And it is also the smallest partial tear he's ever seen.






SUP Sports Hammer: 8'11" x 31" x 4" @ 140 Liters
SUP Sports One World: 11'1" x 30" x 4.5" @ 173 Liters

ninja tuna

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Re: Left Knee Torn Meniscus Diagnosis
« Reply #23 on: November 09, 2018, 01:13:05 PM »
That is really interesting in the way yours is.  Hopefully when it "goes" it will be in a direction or way that it is not too bad.  I hope you will have an easy a time as I am post-op.  Ligaments are a pain and take time to heal. Good to hear you are getting past that part.