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Old 07-18-2009, 01:09 PM   #1
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degenerative medial meniscus tear

I am new here, so please excuse me for not wording things right. First off, I am 49 years old, female, I am not overweight. Not terribly active other than I work full time on my feet alot. I am not one to go to the dr. when I feel pain or sick. After 5 weeks of having the worst pain in my life in my left leg. I finally went to the dr. We said it looked like I had degenerative medial meniscus tear. I went on Tuesday and had an MRI and I got my results and they confirmed I had degenerative medial meniscus tear. I am suppose to go to an orthopedic dr next week. While I have been off work for a week, and not on my feet and doing the work I was doing at work, my leg feels somewhat better, it still gets locked, and has like a burning pain, and I can't seem to put all of my weight down on my leg. What I actually wanted to know is surgery always neccessary, and/or when I go back to doing what I was doing at work is it going to start back up with the pain. I think it was work related, but not sure, it seems the pain just started without really knowing when. So I did not say when I went to the dr. that it was work related. Could someone help me?

 
Old 08-02-2009, 05:03 AM   #2
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Re: degenerative medial meniscus tear

just goot back from my husband having surgery on a torn miniscus. He has been living with terrible pain for years and finally decided to fix it. We made the mistake of trying a steroid shot, and he had a horril\ble horrible reaction. After his third day of surgery on his torn miniscus and ligaments torn, he is up walking around. Not totally pain free, but so much better than it was. Good luck.

 
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Old 08-02-2009, 06:45 PM   #3
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Re: degenerative medial meniscus tear

Hi Momnga....I've had 14 knee surgeries including both arthroscopic and open knee surgery for a torn meniscus.

First....yes, the pain will come back when you start walking on it again and no, it won't repair itself as the torn piece of meniscus has no blood supply. It's not work related as it has been labeled "degenerative" or the result of aging. If you don't do surgery to fix it or remove the piece, it will greatly accelerate the arthritis that is already setting up in your knee(hence the degenerative label). You'll be looking at a total knee replacement in a few year if not fixed instead of perhaps never having one if it is fixed.

Think of the torn piece of cartilage as a giant ball bearing that has gotten lose and is rolling around inside your knee joint getting stuck, damaging good cartilage, inflaming the lining of the joint by hitting it and maybe even causing another tear by getting lodged in the outside area where another meniscus resides. There are a ton of reasons to have the surgery done but I can't think of one good one not to have it done.

The surgery is done through a scope and will leave you with 3-4 incisions about 1/2 inch long...day surgery. You'll be in less pain when you leave the hospital than when you entered. I should know...I've had 8 scopes. Now they're metal and plastic knees.....and you don't want to go there if you don't have to.

good luck..............Jenny

 
Old 08-03-2009, 02:09 PM   #4
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Re: degenerative medial meniscus tear

Thanks for your replies. My surgery is scheduled for Aug. 19th. Living in a small town I could not scheduled any sooner. Is it normal for my knee to be so sore and swollen. The swelling is mainly on the outter side above the knee, I thought the meniscus was on the inner side. My knee seems to be locking alot. I am on my on my feet alot. I am not one to just sit around, and I was afraid if I sit it would get stiff, like it does at night while I am sleeping. And another question, how long are you normally out of work after the surgery. My job requires me to be on my feet alot, it isn't a sit down job. And it does require lifting sometimes.


 
Old 08-03-2009, 04:23 PM   #5
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Re: degenerative medial meniscus tear

That will depend on your doc and how much damage has been done inside the knee. I had one scope where he had me off my feet for 6 weeks trying to get the inflammation to calm down and heal the interior damage. Yet after another(removed a chunk of bone that broke off)I was back after 1 week. Treated fast, recovered fast.

And of course, it also depends on how fast you heal. So I can't give you a good idea except to say it's fairly fast. Some orthos have you ease back in so you might be able to go back part time after a week then 3/4 time then full time while slowly letting you increase the amount of weight you can lift.Still others say no work or lifting for 3 weeks then you go back fully. Need to ask your doc.

If you have any concerns about losing your job while out, sign a Family and Medical Leave Act form. It protects your job for 12 weeks. They have to let you sign one...it's federal law. It says they don't have to pay you but of course, if you have sick time or vacation pay they you collect but the FMLA protects your job.

good luck..................Jenny

 
Old 10-18-2009, 07:00 AM   #6
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Re: degenerative medial meniscus tear

Six months ago I have medial meniscectomy. I have gone through physical therapy and still have occasional pain in my knee and burning on the side of my knee. Is this normal.

 
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