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  • Knee Arthroscopy to Remove Meniscus Tear?

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    Old 04-09-2007, 07:54 AM   #1
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    jj9500 HB User
    Knee Arthroscopy to Remove Meniscus Tear?

    Hi. For years I've had problems with my left knee. I'm 42 years old. All started about 5 years ago with a volleyball injuregy. MRI images showed sprain of the ACL and a bakers cyst in the back of my knee (no damage to the meniscus). After that healed, every now and then that knee would act up. Most recenlty over the last 4 months, I would be walking and it would feel like somehting would snap or pop (almost like my knee would give out) and then it would be very painful. I would walk with a limp for a couple days becsue I couldn't put any weight on that leg and it was painful to compeltely straighten that leg. After a day or two it would be fine. This would usually happen after a sudden move, walking quickly, etc. The sound is almost like bone hitting bone. The fear of this happening all the time has limited me to activites that I normally would like to do. I went for an MRI a couple weeks ago and it shows a meniscus tear and a still a bakers cyst behind the knee. The doc sid the cyst is caused from the tear in the meniscus and that the tear won't heal on it's won't heal on it's own because there is no blood supply to it. I could take ibuprofen when it acts up or cortisone shots, but it won't eliminate the problem. Or another option is the Arthroscopy outpatient surgery to remove the torn menisus piece. Does this sound familiar to anyone. Do I sound like a candidate for this procedure? Has anyone had this done? Will it eliminate my problem of the popping pinful knee problem? I don't want to be out of commission for a long time. I have two young children and work full time. How long is the recovery from it. I don't want to have an unnecessary surgery, but then again I don't want to live my life with this fear of my knee popping when I do certain acitivites and limping for a couple days.... I hate having any type of surgery unless it's needed. Any suggestions? Thank you!

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    Old 04-16-2007, 09:04 PM   #2
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    bigstan HB User
    Re: Knee Arthroscopy to Remove Meniscus Tear?

    Hi jj9500, I'm 40 yr male. Played sports all my life including college ball. Just had an MRI done this past Saturday because my left knee has been popping in and out of place. The result is a meniscus with cyst. From what I read the cyst is common with these kinds of tears. You are correct about the no blood supply therfore it won't heal on its own. This is what I have learned so far:

    A meniscectomy is a procedure to remove the torn portion of the meniscus. This procedure is far more commonly performed than a meniscus repair. Most meniscus tears cannot be treated by a repair for a number of reasons. Often the tear is in an avascular region of the meniscus, and will not heal even if repaired. Some tears are frayed and cannot be sutured together. In these cases, the meniscectomy is done to remove the damaged portion of meniscus. The meniscectomy has a faster recovery, but it can lead to trouble years down the road because of the absence of the normal meniscus.

    Also there is a better chance fore arthritis setting in read on: With a meniscus tear (torn cartilage) in your knee, the shock absorbing capacity of the joint is threatened. Because of this, there is an increased risk of developing damage to the articular cartilage surface of the knee joint bones; this is commonly referred to as knee arthritis. Loss of the meniscus places more of a burden on the cartilage surfaces of the joint and they are more likely to develop arthritic changes. Therefore, any lifestyle changes to decrease your risk of developing arthritis can improve the prognosis after having sustained a meniscus tear. For example, weight loss, low-impact exercise, and prevention of further trauma to the joint will all improve the long-term prognosis. If a meniscus repair is possible, the long-term prognosis, especially in younger patients, is improved due to restoration of the normal knee anatomy. However, as mentioned previously, a meniscus repair may not be possible in many patients with torn cartilage.

    A partial meniscectomy is a surgical procedure that is performed to remove a piece of torn cartilage in the knee joint. Arthroscopic surgery is often recommended if the torn meniscus is becoming bothersome to the patient.

    I myself am meeting with the doctor next week. I have instability when I walk which is interfering with my normal life. I really don't want arthritis to set in which will happen if surgery isn't performed.

    Keep me posted on your sucess.

    Last edited by bigstan; 04-16-2007 at 09:05 PM.

    Old 04-19-2007, 03:31 PM   #3
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    cjammom HB User
    Re: Knee Arthroscopy to Remove Meniscus Tear?

    Wow BigStan..I read your post with interest...I have a fragmented meniscus..(name given by ortho at the time)..I never had any surgery..did some PT. which seemed to help and went on my way. That was about 3yrs ago..well it came back to haunt me..osteo has set in..and now I am experiencing alot of stiffness..I posted awhile ago looking to see if anyone out there ever had synvisc injections..or anything like that and I didnt get any responses..well I have done my own investigation and I have a scheduled appt. for the second week in May...its a total of 3 injections, given a week apart. I really hope this will do the trick for me..I exercise everyday, and its getting tougher everyday..they feel good once I get them moving, but really pay the price later on..they get very stiff and painful.
    Good luck with your Dr. appt. next week. I can imagine how difficult it must be for you..especially since you were so active!
    keep posting..would love to know if you get some relief!

    Old 04-19-2007, 03:38 PM   #4
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    cjammom HB User
    Re: Knee Arthroscopy to Remove Meniscus Tear?

    oops sorry JJ,
    I have a friend who had the surgery recently, and with great has taken a long while to heal however..and she is an avid runner so its difficult for her to sit back and wait it out..I have that popping myself..many times a day, and it is painful and annoying! I am almost embarrased to walk up the flight of stairs at the gym because my knee makes terrible crunching noises!! yuck! always looking around to see who is gonna hear my messy knee noise!
    whatever decision you make...just want to wish you well.

    Old 04-25-2007, 10:15 PM   #5
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    Re: Knee Arthroscopy to Remove Meniscus Tear?


    I may have a mensical cyst as well. My doc is out of town until May 7th but I just had the MRI done this week. I'd be interested to know what you find out and what options your doctor gives you.
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