The Pros and Cons of Arthroscopic Surgery

 

Arthroscopic surgery, or arthroscopy, “keyhole surgery” as it is sometimes called, is generally a simple, minimally invasive surgery that, in recent years, has seen a huge swell in popularity.

According to the American Academy of Orthopedic Surgeons, 1.5 million people receive knee arthroscopies each year.

During this procedure, the surgeon makes three small incisions in your knee and then inserts the arthroscope, which is a camera the size of a pen, into your knee to visually evaluate the condition of the joint. Then repairs are made using tiny surgical instruments through the scope.

In many cases, this surgery is necessary and very beneficial to the health of the knee. An arthroscopy can fix painful torn cartilage or a torn meniscus, bone spurs, or can be used to clean out a knee that has floating pieces of cartilage or bone. Often times, the knee joint needs to be “cleaned out” and pieces of unwanted tissue are removed that cause unwanted irritation and pain.

Depending on the condition of your injury, arthroscopy is beneficial especially if something in your knee is broken or torn. However, in some cases, this surgery can and should be avoided.

I have had several clients whose doctors wanted to perform arthroscopic surgery as a type of “exploratory surgery” to see if there is anything going on in the knee that an MRI, CT, or X-ray missed. Unfortunately, this left them in more pain than before the surgery. If your doctor recommends that you have “exploratory surgery,” I would make sure and ask your doctor if it is necessary before proceeding.

No matter how “NON” invasive a surgery is, surgery is surgery. And your body faces the trauma and pain that comes with being cut and probed. The average recovery time for an arthroscopy is four to six weeks and that is assuming that the surgery was successful. It is important to weigh your options in order to determine if arthroscopic surgery is the right choice for your injury.

86 comments on “The Pros and Cons of Arthroscopic Surgery

  1. What is your opinion on cold laser surgery(non-invasive) for the knee.
    I am using a ML 830 model from Microlight, 6 treatments so far and I feel my knee inproving!?
    psychological or??

    • Cold laser therapy sounds like it’s helping you. The research I’ve done on it all looks good however the ultimate test is whether it works for you! Psychological or not the mind plays a huge role in the body’s ability to heal itself. Do a google search on the work of Dr. Bruce Lipton and you’ll see what I’m talking about…Keep me posted as to your progress.

  2. I tore the meniscus had the arthroscopic surgery may 2011 and he apparently removed the meniscus, sometimes it is in constant paid, sometimes none, sometimes the pain to walk stairs kills sometimes none, it’s weird. Now I am bone on bone and they want to do a knee replacement, but at 53 I don’t want to. The majority of the pain is on the inside of my knee . Now my other knee is going in sympathy with my right knee and has similar pain when in certain positions.
    Any suggestions?

  3. In April this year 2012, my Right knee was hurt by others player while playing football. That was my suspected initial injury to my Lateral aspect of the RT knee Joint. After that whenever I try to sit on a floor for prayer or squat I felt pain in RT knee and give up my sitting due to pain.
    After a while my Knee pain was started to subside with my daily activities without any medical intervention.
    Right after 45 days of my initial injury, one day I was trying to do a “Yoga sitting Cross-Legged Position” (Buddhist Position) .On manual stretching with my hands of my right leg to over the left leg . Suddenly I felt the right leg was over stretched right leg touched to bally over left. That time I also felt my right knee arrangement lose. Then after I stood-up to check my RT knee, tried to make it ok by using my hand, start to feel a little bit pain.
    After few hours, I felt in my RT knee like- “Suddenly lock of my knee” and stop walking for a moment. With my voluntary movement to the knee it’s become ok. That time I felt “Give away sensation” of my Rt knee. And started pain associated with this abnormal sensation four/five days later.
    On 15-Nov-2012 Doctor did RT knee partial meniscectomy and now (on 20-Feb-2013) I can walk but not like before. Pain disappeared but not getting total balance on RT leg.

  4. dear docter,
    I am 46 male,5-6 height,weight 104kgs,I met with bike
    accident in 2010,my right knee was injured,now i am feeling pain
    while walking , sir, I need advice.. Is surgery required or not..

    MRI RIGHT KNEE JOINTClinical details:
    PainOBSERVATIONS:Intramedullary hyperintense signals are noted in PDFS
    images involving distal shaft of femur -marrow oedema.Full thickness
    tear of anterior cruciate ligament is noted.Buckling of
    postero-central is noted without tear.Complex tear noted involving
    posterior horn of medial and lateral menisci.Rest of the menisci are
    normal.Lateral and medial collateral ligaments are intact.Tibial and
    femoral condyles and upper end of fibula are normal.Patella and
    patello-femoral joint are normal.Grade – II sprain medial patellar
    retinaculum is noted.Articular cartilage is normal.Quadriceps and
    patellar tendons are normal.Mild knee joint effusion noted.
    Periarticular soft tissue oedema noted.No evidence of loose
    bodies.Muscles surrounding the knee joint are normal.Popliteal fossa
    is normal. No focal lesion.

    Impression:Full thickness tear of anterior cruciate ligament.Complex
    tear involving posterior horn of medial and lateral menisci.Grade – II
    sprain medial patellar retinaculum.Mild knee joint effusion.

  5. Good day, a few weeks ago my left knee popped. the pain increased as the days progressed. I finally went to a specialist. I am scheduled for surgery but have had conflictly reports about the time frame for recovery.
    Incidently I tore my cartiledge and having arthoiscopy (spelling?)
    can you give me some information. I work as a teacher and am on my legs most of the time.

  6. I had bi-lateral knee arthroscopy almost 10 months ago now. Recovery time was no where near what I was told. here I am 10 months later and only now am I where I was “before” the surgery! I had/have knee osteoarthritis and had meniscectomies done as well as cartilage debridement, on both knees. My advice, if you are told that your knee osteoarthritis condition can be improved with arthroscopy, don’t do it! Run the other way! Try anything and everything but “don’t” go the surgery route, no matter how promising your surgeon may make it sound.

  7. Hi I have a undisplaced complex tear in posterior horn of the medial meniscus. Can anyone tell me what to expect ( start to finish ). Any info would be great. Thank you.

  8. I am 47 years old women and I have lost my job and I lost health insurance during all this process I found out I have a torn meniscus on my knee. I have knee pain I don’t know if I should get insurance and then have the surgery.I have another factor I was awarded unemployment insurance and I am concern that if I open a disability claim I will loose my unemployment benefits that covers me until 2014. mean while I need to look for work.

  9. Type 2 lateral Meniscus in the left knee
    MRI showed inflammation along with liquid in the kneee
    Been doing PT been it still hurts (subtle pain but still there) from time to time
    been about 1.5 months since initial (only 2 weeks since diagnosis and PT)
    Dr i’m seeing says it can’t be healed without surgery and that it might become a type 3 then i’ll be forced to due surgery.
    can i resume normal activity (playing sports, soccer, squash, etc) with surgery? if so will the injury become worse?
    if i do surgery will i be able to resume normal activity? is there a chance it’ll get injured again?
    what are the side effects and long term problems?

    • BJ,

      Thank you for thinking of us when it comes to your knee concerns. To better assist you, I have contacted you directly via email to provide you with information on your discomfort. Again, thank you for contacting the Knee Pain Guru and I look forward to speaking with you soon.

      Kind regards,

      Mimi|Customer Support

  10. had a knee scope done on a monday and today is thursday. was instructed not participate in any stre ct stretching or strengthening exercises for a total of two weels, which is my scheduled follow up visit. is this norma?

    • Hi Monica,

      Thank you for reaching out to us! To better assist you, I have contacted you directly via email.

      Kind regards,

      Mimi |Customer Service

  11. Hello,
    Here is a little history prior to my question. I developed pain in right knee in August 2013 which limited my outdoor activities. After meeting with my family physician, he prescribed physical therapy. I completed eight weeks (Aug to Oct) of therapy but the result was less than satisfactory. I received some reduction in pain but my right knee maintained a large amount of fluid, pain and reduced movement. After an x-ray, MRI, draining the knee and consultation with a surgeon, the prognosis is a medial tear located on the horn of the meniscus with a dash of osteoarthritis to boot. The surgeon says this is an elective decision. Another kicker – since that consultation, I felt a click/pop in my knee and now the pain, swelling and limitations are much, much better. I am nervous this situation will repeat itself if the knee “clicks/pops” again. I am told there is nothing I can do about osteroarthritis, but I am unsure if surgery will solve the problem of the meniscus tear for good. Question: Is it best to delay surgery until I must have it?

    Best,
    Tony

    • Hi there Tony!

      Thank you for your patience. To better address your question, I have contacted you directly via email.

      -Mimi|Customer Support

  12. I am a 43 year old women. I had a lateral release procedure done at 16 years of age. Then two years ago I had arthroscopic knee surgey for torn meniscus and when in there surgeon found that I had some articular cartlidge damage and cleaned in up. 6 months ago I started with knee pain again on the inside of my knee, was taking OTC meds but no help with pain. I finally went back to the orthopedic surgeon again last month. he took xrays but showed nothing. Had an MRI done again, and the report came back as having another tear, but surgeon is not sure if it is a new tear or it just picked up from the old tear. wanted to rule out osteochondral lesions but MRI wasnt cleared. He suggested a cortisone shot to see if that relieved anything and if not suggested exporatory surgery. Well a week has gone by and no difference in the pain. would you suggest a second opinon or have the exploratory surgery?

    • Hi there Kim!

      Thank you for reaching out to us. To better assist you, I have emailed you directly.

      Mimi
      Customer Support

  13. 62 year old male. Right knee pain. Overweight – 20 pounds. Never had knee problems before. Orthopedic Dr./Surgeon says osteoarthritis. A Doctor a couple years ago said the same thing but pain much worse this time.

    X-ray shows little space between joints. MRI reveals tear. Surgeon says 50/50 on arthroscope to help. That doesn’t sound like good odds to me. Thinking of a second opinion but more importantly, seeing if I can avoid surgery through diet & exercise.

    Your thoughts?

    Thx – Rick

    • Hello Rick!

      Thank you for reaching out to us! I suggest booking a free 30 min consultation/knee evaluation with Bill to discuss what your experiencing. Bill will be able to provide great advice and recommendations/solutions for whats going on. If your interested, please click on the link below to complete the consultation form and schedule a date and time that is best for you. Feel free to reach out to me for further assistance.

      http://thekneepainguru.com/lp/knee-recovery-program/free-introductory-session/questionnaire/

      Kind regards,

      Mimi | Customer Service

  14. Folks have had problems with right knee was active and n sports when young and have had a couple bicycle wrecks lately and fell in Feb.hurting knee primary care doc said arthritis but knee surgeon says torn meniscus both sides wants to scope it. Have heard this is temp. as most have to have knee replaced after 2-10 years. Been doing yoga and seems to be helping. Can the scope do more harm than good removing too much and changing wear patterns in knee movement. Luckily have to get release from VA doctors and giving me time to check out options as they are so booked I can’t get in to see cardiologist till next month to vet release please advise

    Rn

    • Hi Charles

      Another suggestion would be to join Bill’s Private FB Group, Knees for Life Inner Circle. When you join his inner circle, you gain the ability to interact with him in a private Facebook page, have a monthly group content call with him, and get the inside scoop on his upcoming events and programs. If your interested, please email me directly at customerservice@thekneepainguru.com and I’ll be happy to provide you with additional information. Right now, we have an early bird special going for $49 [Normal Price $99]. I hope to see you on the list!

      Kind regards,

      Mimi
      Customer Support

  15. Hi I am a 23 year old male, and have a partial tare on the horn of my miniscus. I also have a partial tare on my ACL. Sometimes my knee feels great, other times it’s sore and I need my splint. Do you think a month of great physical therapy would be suffice or do I NEED the surgery. (Knee scope). Doc says he doesn’t think I need ACL reconstruction, but he wants to take a “better look” while scoping my knee. PLEASE GIVE ME ADVICE!
    Thank You.

  16. Hi i’ve never done this before but hoping to get some quick answers on expected recovery time for Lateral Release that i just had done yesterday in fact. I wasn’t given any directions on if i should start physio sooner than later. Only papers given were about followup appt on Nov 3. I should add i am 50 yrs old and was diagnosed with Parkinson’s disease at the age of 43 but at the moment with meds my symptoms are controlled with respect to motor skills. But i do still need to be able to work on balance and i’m worried about strengthening. I guess basic question is what is the “normal” recovery time and when should rehab begin.

    thank you

  17. 5 years ago while playing baseball i thought i heard a pop in my right knee.
    I went through Physio and seen a sports doctor in regards to the injury. Physio told me that i had a pull in the ligiments, the surgeon i spoke with claimed an ACL tear.
    After a couple years, i now have burning sensations behind my knee, went for an MRI and it appears i have a Vertical Complex Tear in my Meniscus. I’ve gone about my business without surgery so far, but was considering it due to the pain that i’ve been going through lately.
    As a daily athlete, from weights and sports, would it be worth the procedure OR should i ride it out? What are the pros and cons of having the Meniscus layer removed (as that is what they said they would have to do if we went to surgery).

    thank you!

    Dana

  18. My brother got injured and shoulder was dislocated.can you please suggest me which is the better option either keyhole or open surgery.if so what is the pros and con’s on that.

  19. I have a right lateral meniscus tear surgeon said I will need surgery but my knee doesn’t hurt I just feel restricted to bend it all the way. I’m also scared of playing sports again or doing squats and leg presses at the gym at this point. Not sure if I should do surgery or not. Do u have any suggestions?

  20. I HAD TOTAL KNEE REPLACEMENT 16 WEEKS AGO.I HAVE PAIN ON THE LOWER RIGHT FRONT OF MY “NEW” KNEE.MY DOCTOR THINKS THE PAIN IS CAUSED BY THE POPLITEUS TENDON AND WANTS TO REMOVE THE TENDON.EVERYTHING I READ SA Y’S THE PAIN FROM THE POPLITEUS TENDON EFFECTS THE BACK OF THE KNEE. MY PAIN IS RIGHT LOWER FRONT.WHAT ARE THE PRO’S AND CON’S OF HAVING THIS TENDON REMOVED ?

  21. I have been having pains in my hips and knees. The cold effects them and it hurts to walk or stand for a period of time. I went and had blood work done and everything. My doctor sent me to a rheumatoid specialist. He said that I need to exercise when I first wake up. The exercises aren’t helping me and my hips have been cracking as well. Any tips on what I should do next?

    • Heather,

      I’ve got more than tips! I’ve got a complete philosophy and approach so you can teach your body to let go of the tension in your hips and knees. The key is in your nervous system – the source of all pain. There’s nerves in your knees and hips that are being irritated when your body gets cold made worse when you walk and stand. All we need to do is begin teaching your body how to recognize what comfort is in your knees and hips. Your body will take over from there…

      If that sounds like something you’d like for your hips and knees. Then look into one of my programs: http://www.thekneepainguru.com/product-catalog/ to get started. After signup we’ll have a conversation where I’ll give you homework to start on that will begin giving you relief in the next day or so.

      Sound good?

      Bill

  22. I had injured my knee while playing soccer. While falling the knee had twisted a little bit. But I am not sure what is wrong with my knee because I seem to be walking fine. But while running, my knee just goes sidewinder a little bit. So could u tell me what is the actual problem that I’m having here. And can u please give me an advice of what kind of treatment can be done?

  23. Sir I had grade 1 tear in posterior horn of medial mensicus. doctor advised me small surgery but I would prefer holistic approach . Can you please tell how much time will it take if if I am dependent on just phyiotherapy and rest to get me to pre injury level. ?

    • Ayush
      Time for healing is going to depend on factors like: Nutrition, Hydration, Rest, Supplementation, Getting the pressure off of the nerves, etc. Get all those right it will be much shorter than if you don’t. I know it’s a vague answer however there much more to the question than giving you a simple number of weeks or months. If you’d like to speak about my program and how it could help you accelerate this process than here’s a link to setup a time to speak with me about your knee: http://www.thekneepainguru.com/appt/

      Talk soon
      Bill

  24. This seems like a very interesting thread. I am a 15 year old, avid football (soccer) player. I was suffering knee pain, and decided to get it checked and MRI found that the cartilage b/w the patella and the knee was damaged, and the doctors said that the irritation to the bones or tissue caused by that disfigured cartilage was causing swelling in my knee.

    What added to the findings was that the affected leg, my right leg had far less muscl mas in the VMO and Quads.

    I am quite active and i work out often, and i wish to strengthen my muscles as soon as possible, so as to get back to playing ASAP.

    Would arthroscopy allow me to work on my right leg, with a physio without suffering pain or damaging the cartilage further?

    Basically, is Arthroscopy recommended in my situation?

    Advice would be very helpful, life changing probably,
    thanks.

    • Ayon
      How is your doctor defining “cartilage damage?” Depending on the doctor’s answer would give me a better idea of how to answer your questions…

      Regards
      Bill

      • So what has happened is that the cartilage below the Patella has rubbed against some bone and at one point formed a protrusion. Kind of like the knuckle in our hands.

        • Ayon

          Strengthening an already dysfunctional tension pattern causing the problem in your leg is not necessarily going address your issue…

          What is your doctor suggesting?

          Bill

          • Doc is suggesting Hyaluronic acid shots for 2-3 weeks. And then as the tension reduces, he would prescribe Physiotherapy.

            At this point Arthoroscopy looks like it wont do much.

            Your opinion?

  25. I am 15 years old and play football (soccer) all year round and after over extending my right knee last year I have been experiencing persistent pain.

    My family doctor says my MRI showed significant bone swelling (or brushing) and this was due to an impact fracture.

    Soon after I went for acupuncture and my acupuncturist who is also an othropedic surgeon said my MRI showed something closer to an acute ACL or PCL tear.

    So to sum up my question: is arthroscopic sugary recomended in my case?

    Any advice would be appreciated.

    • And to add more information to when I overextended my knee: when it happened I was playing soccer with my friends when suddenly I heard a very loud pop my knee gave out and I fell to the ground.

      Afterwards my knee was very sore, swollen, and unstable. Although I thought something was wrong my mom (whom I was with at the time) told me I was fine and over exaggerating. It has been a year since all of this and I’m not sure if I may have made it worse by not going to the doctor.

  26. I was accidentally kicked on my inner knee about a month ago. Initially, I couldn’t put any weight on it and used crutches for a week and a half. Now I have pain/tenderness on my inner knee and some pain and a weird pressure on the outside of that knee. The pressure on the outside of my knee feels as if there is something pushing against something else. I had an MRI and it just showed a meniscus tear on the inside of my knee. I’m having surgery in a week. I want to know is it possible for something else to be wrong and the MRI just didn’t pick it up. If so, would the doctors be able to see it during surgery. I did explain this weird pressure and was told that the MRI didn’t show anything

  27. I was having significant pain in my right knee. An mri showed torn meniscus and some arthritis. In Nov 9th i had a knee scope and debridement. It has been more than 6 wks and i still have pain on the inner part of my knee . I wake several times a night with pain if my knee has been bent in one position. I seem to have pain at times in the muscles in the back of my knee. And when walking a lot my knee swells. Is this to be expected . Will it ease over a bit more time ?
    Christine

    • Christine
      Thanks for you e-mail question. What did your doctor have to say about your progress?

      I know after my knee surgery I had issues with pain and swelling for sometime afterwards. The surgery, although helpful, exposes your knee to another trauma that your body must heal from.

      The speed of recovery is dependent on many factors like:
      1.) Physical
      2.) Diet
      3.) Mindset

      Making sure you have these optimized will determine the speed at which your body will recover from it’s what it’s experienced/been experiencing…

      Let me know if you have further questions or would like more support with your knee.

      Regards
      Bill

  28. Have knee pain all the time. I have been diagnosed with patella femoral disorder. 3 rounds of pt just makes it hurt more. What next?

    • Dana

      Here’s an e-mail I wrote in regards to your question:

      Does physical therapy cause you more pain? Does the pain even subside before your next appointment?
      Feel like your stuck on a “hamster wheel” in a “pain-tension loop?”

      Here’s what Dana had to say…

      Have knee pain all the time. I have been diagnosed with patella femoral disorder. 3 rounds of pt just makes it hurt more. What next?

      Well…

      Dana really has two options:
      1.) Do nothing different
      2.) Try something different

      If she does nothing different most likely her knee will continue to hurt worse while the joint becomes dehydrated and in a short period of time arthritis will set in as the joint wears.

      In probably 5-10 painful years of limping she’ll be considered by her doctor as a “perfect candidate for a knee replacement”

      and

      Will be on a doctor prescribed strategy of “pain management” until she’s “old enough” to have a knee replacement surgery.

      I know I know…that’s pretty extreme huh?

      It’s actually the typical medical professional’s “business model.”

      I can’t make shit like this up…

      OR

      Dana can try something different…

      – something that affects the body on a deeper level
      – something that focuses on comfort
      – something that train the knees to experience a new reality without pain
      – something that’s natural without drugs, shots or surgery
      – something that she can do herself at home when the pain hits
      – something that she’ll have the rest of her life

      That “something” is what I call, “The Comfort Zone.”

      11 Simple Stretches that relieve knee pain…The program is online and comes in both video and ebook format.

      In this program you will learn how to:
      Stop your limping thru life at turtle-pace and discover your unique position of comfort so those “first couple of steps” feel like you’re leaving sprinter’s blocks.

      Recover faster after those painful PT appointments, spend 10 minutes in the car relieving the pressure off your knee nerves and still get the errands done.

      Quit waiting MONTHS for your knees to heal, use my 11 “Pain-Pattern Interrupt” stretching techniques to train your knees to recover in DAYS.

      It takes only a few minutes a day (more often on the rough days) and if you’re not happy let us know and I’ll give you your money back!

      Honestly, you have nothing to lose except of course your knee pain…

      Click below to sign up for “The Comfort Zone.”
      http://www.thekneepainguru.com/lp/comfort-zone-stretches/

      Regards,
      Bill
      (The Knee Pain Guru)

      ~ “Putting the ‘FUN’ back into Knee DysFUNction”

  29. Hi, I had two athroscopies on the same knee due to torn cartilage. First athroscopy the surgeon trimmed, tidied the cartilage and stitched it together. Pain did not go away after 6month’s I did another athroscopy where surgeon found the stitches were torn and cartilage damaged again. He removed the stitches. Pain still did not go away, its been over a year now and the paun still persist. I was referred to surgeon again and he says I must do another athroscopy because the MRI results indicate that the cartilage is torn again. What if there’s not enough cartilage left. Will the pain on my knee ever go away. Must I even do this third operation? What are my chances of good results after this third one.

    • Zingisa
      Your experience of pain in your knee is not a function of how much cartilage exists. Pain is strictly a function of nerve irritation.

      Yes, the pain in the knee will go away once you stop the nerve irritation…

      Whether you have a 3rd operation is a conversation you need to have with your doctor. Going by your past experience, I hope you’ve chosen to speak to a different doctor?

      Your chances of good results will be directly related to how you answer the above questions as well as your goals.

      I’d be happy to have a conversation with you to go over a integrated comprehensive approach for you moving forward.

      Let me know if that interests you?

      Regards
      Bill

  30. Hello Sir,
    I have a question about knee arthroscopy. I somehow ripped my cartilage bone in knee. So, I have to do 2 things, first get the floating piece out of the knee, and second do something about the gap (empty space) that got created (9mm x 4 mm) in cartilage bone.

    Question to you is which would be a better option for a 40+ year old male weighing 175 lb.
    Option-1 : Shave off/ re-surface the knee
    Option-2: Get a bone-graft from other person and have it patched in the empty space
    Option-3: Not suggested by any surgeon, am thinking just have the floating bone taken off and do not do the any of the option 1 or 2.

    Please advice if you have any other option.

    Regards.

    • Bhavin
      If I were you in your situation. I would go for option 3.

      Then make sure to address diet to get the body to regenerate the cartilage in the joint and learn the specific “Pain-Pattern Interrupts” to make sure the knee can heal and get out of pain as quickly as possible post-surgery.

      Bill

  31. Hello, Bill., et al.

    My name is Suzanne. I’ve just turned 40 years of age. I have enjoyed good health and a fairly active lifestyle. Back in April, I suffered an injury to my left knee simply picking something up in my apartment. (I planted my foot squarely down to anchor myself, but, it was a bad decision: think bad form on an exercise lunge – and I heard the dreaded “pop!” “snap!” and knew something was wrong). I could walk for about 72 hours, but, not after that.

    A few weeks later, in May, I had an MRI taken. The MRI impressions were: 1) Meniscocapsular tear of the medial meniscus about the posterior horn. 2) Low-grade strain within the medial head gastrocnemius muscle. 3) Very low-grade cartilage within the lateral facet of the patella 4) Small joint knee effusion 5) Enchondroma measuring 5.6 mm within the femoral diaphysis.

    I’ve seen two, separate orthopaedists who both recommended a conservative approach and prescribed physical therapy. I did that for a few months. I was also on crutches for months. One of the doctors thought I may be suffering from something called Chronic Regional Pain Syndrome as even the feeling of my pajama pants on my knee was painful. :[ Fortunately, that subsided, too.

    It took about three-four months for the pain and swelling to completely reduce, but, mechanically speaking, I can still feel, very much, that something is wrong. In fact, I cannot walk without some kind of assistance, be it cane or crutches.

    My quality of life essentially plummeted after April 19th.

    My ortho doctor does not think all of my symptoms match what presented on the MRI. He believes I may have some damaged cartilage beneath my kneecap. (Yikes). Finally, my orthopaedist has suggested “exploratory arthroscopy”. The plan is to hopefully repair the meniscocapsular junction and, if necessary, take a bit of cartilage beneath my kneecap to grow it elsewhere in a lab and have it planted back some time later. Exploratory arthroscopy concerns me, but, I know there’s a tear and I know that something is wrong that may not be presenting on the MRI.

    What are your thoughts on this plan?
    I’ve never had surgery of any kind before and I’m terrified. Then again, I’ve never suffered from an injury in my life either, much less one that compromised my mobility in such a terrible way.

    What would you advise?

    Many thanks….

    -Suzanne in Texas, USA

  32. On August of this year while I was jogging I came down wrong and I have a tibial plateau fracture. I was on crutches for 7 weeks and in a brace. I’ve only seen a PA who said my injury was non operable. I did PT also, however my knee is still extremely swollen. I can walk on it but I can’t straighten it if I’m standing and walking can still be uncomfortable. The PA that I was seeing left the practice and also lost my MRI disk. I spoke with another on the phone and he was surpised I hadn’t been getting steriod injections and said I may need arthoscopy if the injections do not work. Needless to say I’m seeing the Dr. On my next visit because I need answers. This has been going on for 4 months now. What are your thoughts?

    • Stacy
      1.) Create comfort in the knee first and foremost
      2.) Setup the conditions so the body can heal the knee by reducing inflammation
      3.) Avoid self-sabotage that puts the knee back in pain

      …and the body will heal itself on its own…

      Here’s a video I did regarding “my thoughts”:
      https://youtu.be/s7bn4bteDWw

      Regards
      Bill

  33. Hi Doctor,

    I just received word from my doctor and this was his findings after I got my MRI

    Impression
    Complex flap tear of posterior horn of medial meniscus, extending into the posterior meniscal root attachment. Anterior horn, body, and posterior horn lateral meniscus are intact.

    Mild superficial fibrillation of medial femoral condyle articular cartilage.

    Mild joint effusion and synovitis.

    Intact cruciate and collateral ligaments.

    I’m terrified of surgery. I absolutely don’t want to go for it.

    He asked me to speak with a surgeon for a possible knee scope.

    Please let me know if physical therapy would help me at all.

    I can walk and put weight on the injured knee. I injured myself by simply getting up from the ground (sitting)

    • Actually, Exercising on the stationary bike seems to be working. No pain. Building strength and muscle back. I can walk fine. Climb stairs up/down no problem.. Just need to walk slow. I cannot rush or run. Accidentally twisting of the knee is the only time I experience a sharp pain.

      I would not even consider surgery as it might even mess up more stuff and introduce more issues.

      • Bob

        I sent this out in my newsletter…Here it is in case you didn’t see it:

        Do you tell yourself the knee pain isn’t so bad? Can you “handle” the pain? Has the pain been worse?

        I see so many people lie to themselves about their knees.

        They justify the pain somehow thinking is a “badge of honor” to ignore how really bad it is.

        Take Bob for instance…

        Here’s what he wrote in with:

        Actually, Exercising on the stationary bike seems to be working. No pain. Building strength and muscle back. I can walk fine. Climb stairs up/down no problem.. Just need to walk slow. I cannot rush or run. Accidentally twisting of the knee is the only time I experience a sharp pain.

        I would not even consider surgery as it might even mess up more stuff and introduce more issues.

        So as long as Bob walks like an old man in a straight line…”He’s GOOD!”

        WTF?

        Can you imagine the life Bob is living?

        Tentative and hesitant with every step?!

        Screw that!

        Setting the bar low like that on life to justify a pitiful existence.

        But hey! It’s cool with me if that’s how he rolls…

        I’m sure it’s different for you…

        That’s what my “Quit Your Quack: 6-Week Knee Pain Relief Program” is for…

        When you become a member you’ll learn to:

        Stop losing range of motion in your knees. Stand up straight again like you did when you were younger feel comfortable as you proudly swagger into the lodge after a day on the slopes.

        Quit feeling upset at “professionals” that can’t seem to “get” your situation. Instantly relieve the frustration with your doctor and physical therapist from a natural solution that works alone or alongside your existing treatment plan.

        NEVER allow your limp to embarrass you. Get out of knee pain with the “Quit Your Quack” simple and straightforward approach as you smooth out your stride as the days pass by.

        Click here to reserve your seat today:
        https://www.thekneepainguru.com/lp/qyq/

        ** There are 9 spots or 6 days left whichever comes first…before the next class begins**

        Regards,
        Bill
        (The Knee Pain Guru)

        ~ “When you tried everything else and nothing worked for your knees…”

        Copyrighted & Published by Healing Concepts, L.P.

        Bill Parravano is The Knee Pain Guru
        “The Best in the World at Eliminating Knee Pain without Drugs, Shots, or Surgery.”
        http://www.thekneepainguru.com/
        Healing Concepts, L.P.

  34. Hi!
    I’ m having a elongated acl and pcl grafts am missing my popliteus. My Doctor wants to explore my knee via arthroscopy since my recent MRT doesn’t really give enough clues on wheather or not there is something to fix about my condition (due to interference screws from the acl graft the MRT is shit). He wants to take out the screws and fill up the tunnels, but besides that there is nothing planed and there are no next steps mentioned. I can’t really decide on what to do… any advice

  35. Hi Bill,
    I’m a 45 y/o competitive cyclist with, unfortunately, compromised knees from years ago. The knee Im questioning is the right. In 1998 I had an ACL reconstruction and partial medial meniscectomy from an older injury. Knee was asymptomatic until 13 weeks ago, when while pulling my I
    knee into flexion from extension (sitting at the table withy right leg extended), I felt a catch laterally at joint line. I could not flex or bend my knee without pain past 45 degrees, was able to fully extend. I wiggling tried to manipulate the loose piece out, which I imagine did work its way loose. a little swelling at the knee later, and all was ok for two weeks. 10weeks ago I suffered a fall in competition, fracturing my pelvis in 3 spots. Non weight bearing for 4-6 weeks, my pelvis healed well. During this time, I imagine due to muscular atrophy and imbalance, my knee would constantly get stuck while lying down, knee fully extended, and trying to bend my knee to 45 degrees, again laterally. I would extend knee and wiggle until whatever was locking came free. I had an mri done, showing previous medial meniscectomy, as well as posterior body/ horn tear of lateral meniscus, as well as a free edge radial tear of lateral meniscus. Now that I am in PT for the pelvis and improving well there, with strength and weight bearing activities, my knee has been regularly locking when coming into flexion (about 45 degrees the locking begins). It has interfered with sleeping, getting in and out of a seated position, my cycling and training, and I am now contemplating arthroscopy to shave the lateral radial tear. I am very concerned with OA at this point, the MRI showed mod thinning of articular cartilage medially from surgery in 1998, and minimal thinning laterally. I feel there is no other option mechanically to remain active and competitive without the knee locking up. Any advice…and thank you for listening.

  36. Hi,

    I am a 61 year old male that has been fighting with right knee pain for years. I went to a very reputable Orthopedic doctor who told me that my pain was related to what he called “”driving or movie theater” knee. Slightly bent and turned out. I had a series of three shots over 4 years. A steroid shot that seemed to help for about a year or so. Then twice I had Euflexxa shots. One lasted about a year and the other about 6 months. I decided to go to a new Orthopedic doctor (also reputable) who told me that my knee cap was out of alignment. So, he recommended a series of stretches with bands and also taught me how to tape my knee cap. After about two months I went back still with pain and he recommended Lateral Release Surgery. I guess what I’m asking is what your thoughts are about the surgery and if you think this is a valid choice to my issues.
    Thanks!

    • Mark
      “Driving or movie theatre” knee is a new one.

      Thoughts?

      The surgery will put you through trauma and pain only not to correct the issue in the end. I wouldn’t do it if I were you…

      It’s a valid choice, just NOT a good one…

      Regards,
      Bill

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