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Knee Doc Tomorrow

Old 08-14-18, 09:03 AM
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E53 
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Knee Doc Tomorrow

Ten or so years ago I went to an orthopedic surgeon to find out why my knee was in pain a lot of the time. She sent me for an x-ray, then told me I had arthritis. She said I should go to a physical the******, which I did. The physical the****** gave me a couple of exercises which helped to strengthen the joint, and it seemed to work well.
Now I got into biking about a year or so ago, and have done some pretty good rides. I did the 250 mile Trans NH this year, and I do about 40 miles on my weekend ride and maybe half that if I get out during the week. I tend to ride more during the cooler weather.
Back to my knee.... I've been riding pain free as far as my knee is concerned, but it does get swollen, and I notice that I can't bend it back as far as my other knee. My concern is that the knee could take me out of riding if were to just ignore it. Surgery is something I definitely want to avoid, and I would not do it unless I had a second opinion. I'm a little nervous here.
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Old 08-14-18, 09:15 AM
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Before any surgery, see a sports medicine doc. If surgery is needed a sports med doc will get you back on the bike asap.
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Old 08-15-18, 12:08 PM
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surgery? for what specifically?
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Old 08-15-18, 12:41 PM
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I've been through exactly this scenario multiple times. My knee got so bad that it was locking and clicking loudly. I went to a couple or orthopedic guys, multiple steroid injections, a surgery consult and then through three physical the******s. The first two PTs just gave me some simple exercises to do and didn't seem that terribly interested in helping me. The third one spent the entire first session trying to figure out exactly what was going on with the muscles around my knee, quizzed me in detail regarding symptoms, my goals regarding what I wanted to be able to do after therapy, and about how hard I was willing to work to achieve those goals. She then set up a plan whereby we worked on exercises for different groups of muscles each session. Suffice it to say that this did the trick.

My knee still gets swollen so I mitigate it using naproxen or ibuprofen ahead of exercise (2 tabs) and then ice afterwards. The doctors/PTs say that it's not going to go away.
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Old 08-15-18, 12:51 PM
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I broke my leg just below the knee in 2001. For a while I was frustrated that the leg that had been broken would not go back as far as the good one, even tried forcing it.. At some point I realized that of coarse I can't move it back as far , it is massively swelling from being broken. Gee, I don't know if this really has anything to do with what is going on with you.
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Old 08-15-18, 04:46 PM
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The visit went great today! They took some x-rays which showed some calcification in the cartilage. The doctor told me that cycling was the best thing I could do for the knee, but if the knee became sore I could take Ibuprofen, or try icing it. He also said he could give me a hydrocortisone shot if needed in the future. Anyway, I'm greatly relieved.
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Old 08-15-18, 09:38 PM
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Originally Posted by E53 View Post
"Knee Doc"
"Knee Doc" made me think of Doc Daneeka, the army doctor in the novel/movie "Catch-22". It is Doc Daneeka who explains "Catch-22" to the hero, Yossarian.

It's good to know your riding didn't exacerbate your problem, and was actually good for it!
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Old 08-16-18, 08:36 AM
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Originally Posted by BobbyG View Post
"Knee Doc" made me think of Doc Daneeka, the army doctor in the novel/movie "Catch-22". It is Doc Daneeka who explains "Catch-22" to the hero, Yossarian.

It's good to know your riding didn't exacerbate your problem, and was actually good for it!
HA HA, I remember watching that movie at the Meadow Glen Drive-in when it first came out. I'll have to find the DVD, and watch it again.
Hey, I just got an idea... How about DVD players for bikes?
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Old 08-16-18, 08:54 AM
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I began having knee pain after a ride in July of '17.
It used to hurt at night, and would even wake me up with the pain.
I had had hamstring and ankle problems just before the knee problem arose.
Got the lidocane/cortisone shot which didn't help for long.
Went to PT for a month, and improved...to a point.
MRI showed the big 4: torn meniscis,Baker cyst,arthritis and bursitis.
3 rooster comb injections and things got a bunch better after a few months, but it did take a while.
If that didn't help, they wanted to scope the knee, but, as that is most often a precursor to replacement, I want no part of it.
Now, I have finally been back on the bike for 2 weeks. I have ridden about 90 miles in that time.
I take 2 ibuprofen tabs before I ride.
Knee feels good. Prior hamstring pull is hanging in here...I feel it every now and then.

One thing is for sure..............starting over SUCKS !!

Hang in there and keep pedalin'.............
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Old 08-16-18, 11:07 AM
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Originally Posted by E53 View Post
HA HA, I remember watching that movie at the Meadow Glen Drive-in when it first came out. I'll have to find the DVD, and watch it again.
Hey, I just got an idea... How about DVD players for bikes?
Read the book instead. As is typically the case, it's 10X better than the film. It's also hilarious in several places. I read it during a multi-week bike tour out west. I can still vividly recall finishing it while sitting outside my tent at a campground in Rexford, WA. I busted out laughing loudly. Other campers were looking at me like I was nuts.
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Old 08-18-18, 09:39 AM
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I take clucosamine sulfate daily. Some who have tried it say it did nothing for them. I'm convinced is has helped but it takes some weeks for a noticeable effect.
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Old 08-18-18, 10:54 PM
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Do you still do the PT exercises? I’ve had great results with PT no matter what the reason. Busted knee, arthritic knee, compressed cervical nerve.
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Old 08-19-18, 03:32 PM
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I havn't found it necessary to take anything for the knee, and I rarely do the pt for the knee except for in the winter when I don't ride. In my case, riding seems to be the best thing for that knee. Today I did a fifty mile ride with a pretty good hill toward the end, and the knee was fine the whole way. My cause for concern was the fact that the knee was becoming inflamed at times and If there was a problem, I wanted to know about it.
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Old 08-19-18, 03:35 PM
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Originally Posted by Ronno6 View Post
I began having knee pain after a ride in July of '17.
It used to hurt at night, and would even wake me up with the pain.
I had had hamstring and ankle problems just before the knee problem arose.
Got the lidocane/cortisone shot which didn't help for long.
Went to PT for a month, and improved...to a point.
MRI showed the big 4: torn meniscis,Baker cyst,arthritis and bursitis.
3 rooster comb injections and things got a bunch better after a few months, but it did take a while.
If that didn't help, they wanted to scope the knee, but, as that is most often a precursor to replacement, I want no part of it.
Now, I have finally been back on the bike for 2 weeks. I have ridden about 90 miles in that time.
I take 2 ibuprofen tabs before I ride.
Knee feels good. Prior hamstring pull is hanging in here...I feel it every now and then.

One thing is for sure..............starting over SUCKS !!

Hang in there and keep pedalin'.............
It's impressive that you got back on the bike after all that you went through. Best of luck!
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Old 08-19-18, 04:44 PM
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I've had sore knees for years... Including swollen knees on occasion.

Then over the last couple of years I've increased my cycling... a lot.

And, I started noticing that the more I rode, the better the knees felt. Somewhere around 5000+ miles a year, and the knee problems have almost completely gone away. Although, they may feel worse if I don't ride for a week or two.

I can't say what my issues were. Dad had gotten bad arthritis in the knees, had several Arthroscopic surgeries by his mid 50's, and eventually got bilateral knee replacement.

When I was younger (20's and 30's, maybe even late teens), I had something that would occasionally catch in my knee if I turned it wrong, and it would cause enough pain to knock me down. Once I straightened out the leg, I could walk, but it would take an hour or two for the pain to completely dissipate. However, it eventually just got better on its own.

Anyway, I take Ibuprofen or Aspirin as rarely as I can (a couple of doses every few months). I believe that it is best not to treat mild inflammation if possible.

Oh, and I do "Mash", although my cadence may be naturally slowly increasing.

I tend to agree... Arthroscopic debridement seems like a good idea, but there is growing evidence that it is ineffective both in short-term and long-term.

Of course, there are many causes of knee pain, and what is effective for one person may not be effective for another with different types of pain.
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Old 08-24-18, 07:18 PM
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Thread moved to Pills and Ills.
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Old 09-03-18, 01:03 PM
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X-ray misses all the soft tissue, probably the problem. An orthopod should order an MRI, find out what's wrong. May or may not be a surgical issue.
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Old 09-10-18, 03:45 PM
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My oldest son has been getting knee pain and swelling for over eight years when he does sports and work that put a lot of repetitive stress on his knees. He's had x-rays and MRI's. One doctor did say that a problem with some of the soft tissue was likely his problem and it would take an MRI to see it. However he also said that since few facilities have the capability to do the MRI with the knee in the bent position that the problem won't be exposed in a way the MRI would detect it. The doctor offered surgery but said just physical therapy for the times when the pain and swelling lingered might be just as beneficial. My son opted for the physical therapy and it did help.

Last year,knee pain was starting to hold him back on long bike rides and when doing lots of hard climbing. I finally got him to let me replace his 12-28 cassette with a 11-32. I sort of regret that now as he is out climbing me on our regular rides and there is no knee pain to slow him down on the century rides, so he's finishing them 30 minutes faster than me now. He used to do them at my speed.
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Old 09-10-18, 04:11 PM
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Originally Posted by Iride01 View Post
He's had x-rays and MRI's. One doctor did say that a problem with some of the soft tissue was likely his problem and it would take an MRI to see it. However he also said that since few facilities have the capability to do the MRI with the knee in the bent position that the problem won't be exposed in a way the MRI would detect it.
What angle does the knee have to bent at? 90 would be difficult, but I'm pretty sure I could get my knees to a full bend back on themselves that should be able to fit, at least for a couple of minutes. Ok, so I am a bit of a contortionist.

I agree, start with conservative exercise and PT before surgery.
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Old 09-10-18, 04:49 PM
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Originally Posted by CliffordK View Post
What angle does the knee have to bent at?
I imagine it depends on the type injury and where exactly it's located. Obviously they do find such injuries on many MRI's, but for others like my son, at least three different orthopedic groups were able to find nothing. And that includes one prominent sports orthopedic group. The last doctor that saw him was the one that told us what I related in the previous post. He did say he thought he was seeing an area that might be the issue, but not conclusively. Back then, six or seven years ago, the MRI imagers in our area were all the typical kind that you lay on and have to be straight and still.

Since the PT helped him and it hasn't been as debilitating as it was then he's just put up with it. I'm sure that will eventually change, he's 30 yo so he's got a while before the invincibility of youth leaves him.

I did just google to see where the med science is on this today. This is one interesting link, mostly for the pic's that explain the issue I'm talking about. Upright Open MRI

Last edited by Iride01; 09-10-18 at 04:53 PM.
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