Ain't insurance fun? I'm lucky mine doesn't have those silly rules! I see a new OS tomorrow on my knee (fell hiking about 10 days ago and probably have bruised bone) - same leg I've had all of the other issues on, of course. I don't think it's too serious but we'll see what he says. You and I appear to be running parallel tracks here - we finally get the hip fixed and then mess up a knee!
Well, I had my MRI follow-up yesterday for my right knee. He said that everything he sees, there technically isn't a stress fracture, but he called it a "stress reaction". There's a spot of cartilage gone from my knee that he thinks is rubbing on the top of the tibia and causing irritation (he explained in detail the images of my knee which really helped me understand more of what is going on).
This spot/irritation "could" turn into a stress fracture (esp. if I started running, jumping and doing high impact things - ha! that's not going to happen!).
So, there is nothing surgical to do for this. I was told, just give it more time. Stay on the crutches for now, but I can switch to 1 crutch or cane. He said to let pain be my guide. The unfortunate thing is that he said I could get these "flare ups" periodically for who knows how long.
The good news is that the joint space in my knee looks good and he said I don't need a knee replacement and if the joint space continues to look OK, may never need one.
Because cartilage doesn't "heal" or regenerate, nothing can be done. Unless someone comes up with a STEM cell transplant,etc. which is where a lot of the research focus is these days, that would be the only procedure which could potentially fix the issue. He did say they are going to be starting a STEM cell research study for people with knee arthritis in the next few months. I said I would be happy to particpate! But, alas, because I've had a prior surgery on this knee and my joint space is good, he didn't think I would qualify. oh well, it was worth a try!
If the pain becomes too bad, he said he could consider doing a cortisone injection, but cortisone slows down the healing process. (so he wouldn't consider an injection for another few months).
All in all, I was happy that it isn't anything worse! And he did say that (depending on my pain) I can get back to low-impact activities probably in July!
Hope everyone has a great Thursday and weekend!
And Happy Mother's Day on Sunday to all the Moms/Grandmothers, etc.!
Ditto, Marvy! Time for these knees to stop holding us back from enjoying Hip 2.5 (you and I are beyond 2.0). I was also glad to see the notation on the knee xray report that the "joint margins are good" and no mention of cartilage loss.
Hi @Mojo333 ! Yes, hearing that I don't need a knee replacement was like music to my ears!
@SaraK - Hopefully there won't be a Hip 2.6 (or beyond)!
It is time for us to get back to our "normal" lives and doing everything fun that we've missed the last couple years! We've got a lot of time to make up!!! (that hopefully won't put us back in the hospital )
@Marvy, I am confused. Your OS says that the joint space in your knee is good, and you may never need a knee replacement. But he also says that there is a spot of cartilage missing from your knee and bone is rubbing against bone, which is causing your pain. So it sounds like there IS a problem with lack of proper joint space going on. I do hope that it will stop hurting at some point, but I wonder why that would happen, as long as those bones are still rubbing against each other. I don't mean to be negative here, just wondering!
Great news the OS mentioned you don't need a knee replacement.
Hopefully the episodes are few and far between, better yet...never.
Thanks for the update and your kind wishes to all the mom's and grandmother's out there. I'll thank you, myself, as I'm both a mom and grandmom.
Have a wonderful weekend and stay in touch! @Marvy
Hi @Krista! I've attached a picture I found online of what my knee looks like. Unfortunately, they don't do knee replacements if you have a hole in your articular cartilage (at least the doctors I have been to about my knees....).
So, the joint space is good, even though I have a pothole... There are procedures (which I totally forgot to ask him about, but will at the next appointment) that are available. OATS, MACI, etc. some of these procedures take multiple surgeries as they go in, harvest the cells/biopsy, then let them grow. Then they have to go back in and patch the hole. The recovery time for some of these procedures can be almost a year. From what I have read, they are really geared towards the "under 40" crowd or athletes. I'm sure as the research and technology get better, there will be more options, but until then, it may very well be a case of "deal with it".
About 9 years ago, I had a surgery on my right leg to even out the joint space (tibial osteotomy). The reason I had that surgery was to buy me more time before a knee replacement. If I hadn't had that surgery, I would have been sporting a knee replacement long before now. My tibia was rotated 21 degrees internally. the pothole that I have now is on the medial side - which is where the joint space was being compressed. So I have had 9 really good years without knee pain and could do everything I wanted. In some ways, having the pothole now isn't a surprise based on my history.
Thanks for the explanation, @Marvy. Your situation is much more clear to me now. It's incredible how many things can go wrong with our bodies, and you've had more than your fair share! Hoping things improve for you.
I hope today finds you doing well and making progress in your recovery.
Happy Four Month Anniversary! I hope it's a good one.
Leave us an update next time you stop by, we'd love to hear from you.
Wishing you a wonderful Spring!
Thank you for checking in and wishing me a Happy Revisionersary...
I actually went to the hip doctor this morning for my last visit! Yay!!! So, from a hip perspective, I'm good to go. He just said to keep working on strength and flexibility (which I will). But, unless something develops that I'm concerned with, I don't need to make a follow-up appointment.
Of course, he knows about my knee issue as they are in the same university system. So he said that my knee should be my main focus now. I told him I have been "orthopedically challenged" the last couple months, so my exercise hasn't been what I would like. But, things happen.
So, I have the knee doctor on Tuesday, so we'll see what he says. I still have to walk with a cane or my trekking poles (for my knee, not my hip). I'm hoping that he will let me start at least riding a stationary bike.... At the last appointment he said it would probably be July before he wanted me to do low impact activities.
Tuesday I had a follow-up with the knee doctor (ok, he's actually a PA). We looked at the MRI images again, and he finally said that he doesn't know what the next steps are. The puzzling thing is that the MRI shows inflammation on the outer side of my knee, but I have no pain there - it is all on the medial/inside of my knee. He laughed when I said I was orthopedically challenged....
Because I've had multiple surgeries on the tibia, there is a lot of (what I call) "noise" in the images. So, he really cannot determine what is from the surgeries and what is current. There are a couple spots near the top of the tibia that he is questioning in addition to the cartilage issue that would be new. You can still see where the screws were in addition to seeing bright spots from the bits of metal from the plates and screws.
Since we are going on vacation, he gave me a brace to wear to see if that helps at all. And of course, I am taking my trusty cane with me. I have to let him know how I do on vacation as we will be doing a lot of walking. But, he is thinking of referring me to a sports medicine knee surgeon, if for nothing else, a second opinion. If that happens, it will be sometime in July. He considered doing another MRI, but because of the past surgeries, he really didn't think it would show much difference.
At least he admitted that he is somewhat puzzled as to why I am experiencing this pain.
Ahhh, yet another chapter in the Big Book of Orthopedics....
I hope you do get that referral to the sports medicine knee surgeon. That should throw more light on your situation. I have found that trekking poles are much better for me than the cane when I am walking longer distances. I get more support. Enjoy that vacation!
Well, according to my family, I am now a "Lurker" as I don't really have much to update on my hip. We went on vacation for 17 days and my hip did pretty good. My hip got a bit tired, but never ached. And I think the tiredness is just because I'm still trying to get more strength in all the hip muscles.
I wore the knee brace that the PA had given me for my right knee. It didn't help much. So he referred me to a sports medicine knee surgeon. Well, Mr. Surgeon spent all of 5 minutes with me, said I had pes anserine bursitis, didn't really need his services, gave me a cortisone shot and left. Never did he say "well, if you don't get any relief from the injection, call and make a follow up appointment". Nothing, nada. The injection has done nothing (except to make me itch). I can't go back to him as it's apparent he has no interest as to why I'm having such pain in my knee (actually it's more in my tibia). At times, the pain is so bad that I get my crutches back out and use them for a few days until the pain subsides. So I'm off now to search for another knee doctor - better make a list as I have a feeling I may need it... Why can't doctors actually listen?
Thanks for the update. It's nice to hear from you. It's great to read that your hip is doing well, but I'm sorry to hear your knee is so bothersome. With any luck you'll soon find a doctor who will listen and help you find relief. Please stay in touch and let us know of any progress.
A peaceful day to you! @Marvy
@Marvy have you tried our surgeon locator (top blue bar)? Or if you give us your general location and how far you would be willing to travel we might be able to help you in your search for a knee surgeon.
I'm so happy to hear that the hip is doing well and has stopped being a prima donna! I'd definitely find a different doctor for the knee. You've spent too much time dealing with doctors that don't really listen to continue down that path! At least you can tell the next one what DIDN'T work!
You should also let the hip PA know about your experience and displeasure. They might be able to light a fire under Mr. Surgeon but, in any event, should be aware of it for future recommendations. I definitely told my hip surgeon why I stopped seeing the pain mgmt specialist he sent me to.
Thought I'd stop by and give a quick update... I'm walking a lot (with no limp!). Not sure if I will ever get to the point of thinking "hip, what hip?".
I've started getting really bad cramps on the side of my hip. If I sit down, it will cramp - very painful. Laying down, cramp. Standing up, cramp. Not all the time, but very often. I've been taking supplements (magnesium, electrolytes, etc.) to try and help with the cramps. They're not helping.
Now, when I am standing, I get a very sharp sensation (not sure if I should really call it pain or not ) at the top of my thigh in the front. If this happens, I have to be very careful of how I move or the "pain" will become sharper. I usually have to just stand still for a moment until I feel comfortable that I can move without it becoming worse. If I move too quickly, the "pain" can radiate down the front of my thigh (not all the way, but about halfway down my front thigh)
I'm sure this is all muscle related, so I've been putting off going back to the surgeon.
Nothing in my routine has changed, so it's not as if I have increased activity or anything to cause the cramps,etc.