untreated Medial patellar ligament tear in 2007....
Hi everyone. I'm looking for some input. I was recently taken off of my parent's insurance since I am 22. I'm in process of going back to college but in the interim, I do not have health insurance, so I'm a little stuck.
Quick backstory: In December of 2007 I dislocated my left knee at work. It was MRI'd in January of 2008 and the doctor said that I had a "medial patellar ligament tear" as well as a contusion and fluid in front of the kneecap. It was extremely painful and I was unable to weight bear for probably about three months. I used crutches and mostly just limped around in a knee brace. Stupidly and against the doctor's advice, I did not "baby" my knee as much as I should have. I still climbed stairs when possible, still was on my feet at work all day. It was just really hard for me to take it easy with work/school/etc that all involved a lot of walking/lifting. Anyway, I was told to make an ortho appointment and it was said that they might recommend surgery. However by that point, my knee was a lot better and so I did not ever pursue treating it any further.
Fast forward to now, almost 3 years later, and I have very recently taken up running (within the past 2 weeks or so). Previous to this I have not had any real problems walking or jogging every now and then. Occasionally it would seem that my left knee was more inclined to hurt or tire faster than my right one, but it never seemed too significant. But after running daily, I noticed increasing pain in it, in the exact location of where it dislocated. At first it was minimal and I chalked it up to having not been very active, so I continued to run on it. Yesterday the pain got increasingly bad after a run and by bedtime I could hardly walk, let alone run, on it. Today it is still difficult to fully weight bear although I'm using it a little more than I was last night. It's very unstable and I can tell there's no way I could run on it, which is depressing.
I guess I'm wondering this - how would such an injury have been treated? I'm curious if they would have actually done surgery on it and just how serious the results would be for not having gotten it and letting it "heal" on its own. Finally, if this is simply just pain from an old injury and I can control it with NSAIDs or a brace, how many damage am I doing to it by running?
Thanks in advance.