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Knee arthroscopy

Discussion in 'Health and wellbeing' started by giggirl, Dec 8, 2010.

  1. I saw a consultant today, I have a tear in my cartilage and the start of osteoarthritis. An arthroscopy is an option to help ease the pain; has anyone had this operation and if so how successful was it?
  2. I saw a consultant today, I have a tear in my cartilage and the start of osteoarthritis. An arthroscopy is an option to help ease the pain; has anyone had this operation and if so how successful was it?
  3. I had arthroscopy about 8 years ago but for a slightly different problem. It definitely eased my problem but unfortunately mine has been recently aggravated again so I couldn't really say if it has been succesful!
    The one thing I will say is that I wasn't prepared for just how long I wouldn't be able to walk for after the surgery and how long it took me to 'learn' how to walk properly again.
  4. As someone who played a lot of netball at quite a high level from the age of 7 onwards (landing on one leg on concrete in pumps-rather than trainers which hadn't been invented) I have had a lot of problems with my knees. I have had 3 arthroscopies on my left knee and 2 on my right and will eventually need replacement joints.
    After the first arthroscopy on my left knee 20 years ago, I only had one incision and I was walking around fine with just a crepe bandage on it (and some nice strong tilex painkillers from the hospital). When I had the right one done 4 years later-same hospital different surgeon as the previous one had retired; I had 2 larger incisions and couldn't put any weight on my leg and ended up on crutches for a week or more. Once all had healed there was a great improvement each time and having got rid of all the rubbish that was washing around my knees, they didn't swell up any more and I went back to playing regular sport such as squash, step aerobics and coaching school football team etc. I wasn't ever offered local anaesthetic and had them alll under a general one.
    I can't say that I had such a good result with subsequent arthroscopies as there is only so much they can do and the surgeon even decided there was no problem doing both knees at the same time (in the summer holidays too)-well you want to try getting on and off the toilet in that state for a start! The surgeon who told me my knees were shot and would need replacing was not encouraging-in my post op check up he just told me that the time to go for the replacements was when I couldn't cope with the pain any more!
    I have since changed consultants to one that isn't so knife happy. I now have hyaluronic acid injections in my knees every couple of years to boost the synovial fluid- he is also now researching using stem cells-although the problem is that not all PCTs will fund the injections so I ended up having to pay privately (or at least my MIL paid for me)
    Good luck, make sure you get referred for physio and I'm sure you'll get a very good result.

  5. I have/had exactly the same problem as you, OP, torn cartilage and osteoarthritis behind the kneecap. My consultant said that sometimes the op makes it better, makes no difference or leaves it worse. I put it off for years until I could only get up the stairs by lifting one leg and dragging the other after me and hauling myself up via the banisters.
    I had the op a year ago and it was nothing. Didn't hurt much after, I was back on my feet within days without too much pain and swelling. But it didn't seem to have made much difference. Then just a few weeks ago, my husband watched me sprint up the stairs not touching the banisters and said "It's a long time since I saw you do that!" and I realised that months and months later, and no physio at all, it had I fact improved to the pointwhere i hadn't even noticed I was moving up steps and ramps without pain - which is what the problem was originally.
    I still can't use an exercise bike or a stepper, and it isn't exactly perfect but I am very glad I had it done.
  6. voodoo child

    voodoo child New commenter

    I had an arthroscopy 20 years ago. I'd had knee problems in my teens and pregnancy made it worse again and left me with loose bodies (bits of bone!!). It was much better after that but has improved further after started taking glucosamine with condroitin - get mine from Boots own brand. Now very rarely have pain and can walk, climb stairs with no difficulty. Can't run far but can run a few yards. Mr VC had it done last year due to torn cartilage from running. Ran again after 3 months and it went again. So there you go - it's worth a try.
  7. Thank you for your replies, both positive and not so. I am already taking Glucosamine Chondroitin, I order mine online at Healthspan. I have googled the arthroscopy and have been pleased with what I've found, a number of blogs, personal experiences, even videos on youtube! I'm sure it would help the tear not so sure about the osteoarthritis although Lily's post has given me hope. I think I will go for it, if it doesn't help I'll be no worse than I am now and if it does then, hey ho that's what I want!!
    Cheers to all. :)
  8. Hi giggirl
    I have not had this on my knee, but have had it on my hip! Also diagnosed with torn cartilage, and was in severe pain everyday for nearly two years. Had the op about 10 years ago.
    I had the op using key-hole surgery (which at that time was new - only one guy in the country did it then - I am assuming its more common now). I had to have bed rest for two weeks (possibly because it was hip not knee). I then returned to school using a stick for about a month, but mostly to protect myself from getting knocked about by the kids after the first week or so.
    Like a previous poster I was warned it could make things beter, worse or stay exactly the same. For me it improved things tremendously. Within 3 months I was so much more active I had lost 2st in weight. I have not suffered any problems since. The only thing I find is if I get very cold, or we get a long spell of damp weather my hip can sometimes ache a bit (no where near the old pain). This also happens at the site of another op I had so can't say whether it's psychological or just having had an op. I do feel a bit like a granny though with a 'The ache in my bones says the weather's about to change' type of thing [​IMG].
    If you can choose whether to have key-hole or open surgery I'd definitely go for key-hole - much quicker recovery!
  9. It will definitely be key hole if I go ahead, cheers :)
  10. I had the knee arthroscopy on Thursday, a day patient and walked out of hospital including walking down the stairs, on the same day.
    Am now religiously doing my physio, sitting with my leg up with an ice pack on it and not in too much pain. Hoping I can do The Race for Life in May!! I was really good before the operation in that I lost 7lbs and went to the gym to strengthen my legs which I hope will aid recovery. [​IMG]
  11. Wow! I am impressed (and very very jealous)
  12. Woohoooooo!

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