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I Think I have/had a Torn Meniscus

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I Think I have/had a Torn Meniscus

Old 09-03-21, 09:32 AM
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work4bike
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I Think I have/had a Torn Meniscus

I was watching some videos on exercises for knee health today when I allowed the next video in line to play, which just happened to be on the symptoms/treatment of a torn meniscus. I got these exact same symptoms about a month ago and I had to let up on my running, opting to do more cycling, but even while cycling I remember a few times where my knee would lock up.

I wasn't sure how much of this injury was to my knee or my hamstring, because some of the symptoms seemed to point to some kind of tear in the hamstring. I've been doing a lot of stretching and just trying to not push it too hard on my rides and take some time off of my running and weightlifting (lower body). Turns out, a lot of what I did was exactly what is recommended as physical therapy for a torn meniscus. Of course, I don't really know if I have/had a torn meniscus, since I don't visit the doctors, but I was just struck at how the symptoms so closely matched what I was feeling.

I'm not sure how healed it is (whatever I got), because I went for a run the other day and it didn't bother me as much, but I did feel that particular stiffness in the leg, just not as bad, so I'll go for another easy run today and keep evaluating.

I think I can trace this injury back to some really heavy lifts I did in the gym, but not exactly sure, since I didn't feel/hear anything pop, just a pain and discomfort that came on one day.

This injury just shows the importance of taking it very easy when something just doesn't feel right, from what I've read a torn meniscus can be very serious injury requiring a lot of recovery time. I'm sure if I would have had the same injury a few years ago I would have made it much worse, because of my faulty mindset of pushing thru discomfort. This injury was never extremely painful, but I knew something was wrong....I'm glad I've finally learned the lesson of listening to my body.


Moral of the Story: Always listen to your body and it's always better to do less than more


.
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Old 09-03-21, 09:39 AM
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everyone's knee injury is different. even meniscus tears are different. my surgeon told me that there may have been a single event, that was the final straw, but ultimately, it was a very active lifestyle that contributed to my meniscus tear. it took several weeks for more than 1 doctor to decide to operate. I was lucky, got a sports surgeon, he took only 17 minutes start to finish, using 2 small holes, 1 for a camera & 1 for the tools. I asked if I could get it on tape & he said sure, bring a full size VHS (this was 1997) & I left the hospital with the tape, same day as the surgery. mine was a flap of cartilage that was folded over. my overwhelming symptom was I couldn't bear weight on 1 knee climbing stairs

go see some docs, get some imaging & good luck!
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Old 09-04-21, 06:10 AM
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You're correct and I absolutely agree that every knee injury is different and it's why I preface this thread with, "I think....".

I think, in general my active lifestyle makes my knees stronger, except when I do stupid things, like over do it, which I have a tendency to do. I do believe the most important thing for good knee health, besides diet is working all the muscles and connective tissues around the knee. We cyclists (and runners) tend to have much stronger quads as compared to our hamstrings and posterior chain in general. That's why I do weightlifting, to get everything. I do believe weightlifting is so very important for us old dudes -- won't be too long before I hit the big Six-O.

I did my run yesterday and if felt better than the other day, but still have this funny stiffness, but it's also getting better. Getting ready to do a long bike ride -- will try very hard to take it easy


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Old 09-04-21, 11:33 AM
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They don't necessarily heal themselves from what I've heard. And do you want all your rides to have to be easy?
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Old 09-05-21, 12:43 AM
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Get thee to an MRI, or whatever they need to figure out what's wrong exactly, then do what you need for that. 🙂
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Old 09-11-21, 09:25 PM
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There are studies out there which show that surgery and PT come out about equal after 15 years. I had a meniscus tear maybe 15 years ago. I tore it doing a quick bounce at the bottom of a heavy stiff-legged deadlift. Yes, stupid. It was painful to walk on, much less run. So as above, get the MRI and an orthopedist's advice, which won't necessarily be surgery. I don't think PT would have helped mine, because it was a leaf-like tear. The leaf would move and go under the main meniscus. Nothing to be done but to snip it. The recovery took maybe a month, maybe more. The worst was the damage to the tissues done by the surgeon trying to get at the thing, but just what he had to do. It was tough to loosen up the scar tissue. My knee is fine today. I squat heavy ad I can and just got back from a 10-day backpack.
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Old 11-26-21, 01:26 PM
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I just got back from a month-long visit up in Maryland, taking care of some business and I didn't have my bike....too much working...However, I did do some running up and down the hills (very hilly where my family lives) and my knee was doing alright, considering I'm still getting over this probable meniscus tear, but I could only run a few times, because the hills were just beating my knee up too much and I didn't want to re-injure it. I didn't feel pain during the runs, but my knee was extremely swollen afterwards, that's what made me decide not to run much up there, instead opting to do exercises that focused on rehabilitation.

Did my first run today, here in Florida since getting back from Maryland and I did have some discomfort, but very mild and so now I'll see if it swells up. Hopefully I can do another run (jog) tomorrow and before long get back on the hills.

Knee feels great when I bike, but it can get a little swollen if I do too many sprints.
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Old 11-26-21, 03:00 PM
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It's worth pointing out that the meniscus is cartilage and does not really heal, except in the very young that are still growing. Once cartilage is torn, it's torn. What you don't want is for a piece of it to tear all the way off and start floating around. You'll know it if that happens.

If I may ask, how old are you?
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Old 11-27-21, 12:03 AM
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Good luck, OP. I’ve been struggling with knee injury and pain for 20 years, and I’m well sick of it all. I’ve had two meniscus tear surgeries in that time, and also have arthritis in the mix now. I wracked one of my knees back in August while walking around Chicago, and it’s probably another tear, but I don’t have the energy to deal with it now. I can do pretty decent on the bike, but standing and walking get miserable quickly. For now, I can’t stand the thought of surgery and recovery, so I’m just limiting my on-the-feet activity as much as possible, waiting for either disaster or a miracle. I’m in nearly constant pain, and it wrecks my mood. Sucks, and I’m basically waiting until I can’t stand the pain to get knee replacement. I hope you don’t get caught up in a similar scenario. Get your knee looked at by a doc if you can, and get the surgery done ASAP if recommended.
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Old 11-27-21, 05:46 AM
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Old 11-27-21, 01:08 PM
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Originally Posted by work4bike View Post
57
I tore mine at about 60. This is science not poetry. Doctors are scientists. Get thee to a doctor. You'll probably need an MRI and then a referral to see an orthopedist. Of course if you don't "visit the doctors" maybe you don't have insurance and that's the source of the hesitancy. There's a reason most folks have health insurance.

The "listen to your body" admonition always follows injury. Why? Because until you get injured you don't know you're doing something wrong. The whole story of being a forever athlete is get injured, get it fixed. The reason we don't see many older hikers out on the trail is because all the rest got injured and had to quit. Well, some of them got fat. That's self-injury. The bike is similar. Out of 130 private ride club members in 2000 we get maybe 10 riders on a nice day.
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Old 04-20-22, 11:55 AM
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I'm still re-habbing my knee, but it's mostly doing very well, but I'm very reluctant to do very tough stuff, especially sprints, which I love doing. However, today after a gym workout where I did a lot of duck walking, which I've only started doing recently. It's a very tough exercise if you've never done it before -- it doesn't take long before your legs start feeling like wet noodles. Then I went for a 20-mile ride and I did one major sprint at the end of the ride, my first since the injury and I was able to get up to 32-mph, the only thing was that I had a slight CT wind, but after the gym workout, I'll take it

Still not feeling confident enough to do a running sprint, but just normal running feels alright.

One last thought...I've been looking into this guy they call Knees-over-toes guy. I was very skeptical in the beginning, thinking this sounds like some kind of fad, but after looking at what he does and the reason behind his exercises, which focuses a lot on strengthening the joints and connective tissues. I really think there's something to it.

He started the ATG program, which for the longest time I thought stood for Ass-to-Ground, because that's the type of squats I do; however, I was wrong...ATG is for, Athletics Truth Group https://www.atgonlinecoaching.com/



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Old 04-20-22, 01:49 PM
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Originally Posted by work4bike View Post
I'm still re-habbing my knee, but it's mostly doing very well, but I'm very reluctant to do very tough stuff, especially sprints, which I love doing. However, today after a gym workout where I did a lot of duck walking, which I've only started doing recently. It's a very tough exercise if you've never done it before -- it doesn't take long before your legs start feeling like wet noodles. Then I went for a 20-mile ride and I did one major sprint at the end of the ride, my first since the injury and I was able to get up to 32-mph, the only thing was that I had a slight CT wind, but after the gym workout, I'll take it

Still not feeling confident enough to do a running sprint, but just normal running feels alright.

One last thought...I've been looking into this guy they call Knees-over-toes guy. I was very skeptical in the beginning, thinking this sounds like some kind of fad, but after looking at what he does and the reason behind his exercises, which focuses a lot on strengthening the joints and connective tissues. I really think there's something to it.

He started the ATG program, which for the longest time I thought stood for Ass-to-Ground, because that's the type of squats I do; however, I was wrong...ATG is for, Athletics Truth Group https://www.atgonlinecoaching.com/



https://youtu.be/F-SfsyCmHBA
In that video, he's basically doing 1-legged quarter squats. One-legged introduces more muscle activity for balancing, so it's harder than regular quarter squats and a plus, uses less weight to do it. Quarter and half squats produce the greatest strength improvements for cycling, though the limited range of motion may not be the best thing for one's knees. I'm usually in favor of full range of motion stuff but strength studies favor the quarter and half squats.
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Old 04-20-22, 03:22 PM
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Originally Posted by Carbonfiberboy View Post
In that video, he's basically doing 1-legged quarter squats. One-legged introduces more muscle activity for balancing, so it's harder than regular quarter squats and a plus, uses less weight to do it. Quarter and half squats produce the greatest strength improvements for cycling, though the limited range of motion may not be the best thing for one's knees. I'm usually in favor of full range of motion stuff but strength studies favor the quarter and half squats.
He also does full range exercises, I only used that video so there was no ambiguity in who I was referring to. It's a pretty interesting story of how he got into strengthening knees. Here's just one more of one of his many videos


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Old 04-20-22, 03:51 PM
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Originally Posted by work4bike View Post
He also does full range exercises, I only used that video so there was no ambiguity in who I was referring to. It's a pretty interesting story of how he got into strengthening knees. Here's just one more of one of his many videos


https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1a6nfG69c9g
I'm familiar with him, do some of his exercises, they work.
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