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Thread: Worn out knee cartilage..

  1. #11
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    Re: Worn out knee cartilage..

    To NotOnUrHelly: Sorry to scare you! Runners Knee and ITB probs are 2 different conditions.Runners knee is pain around kneecap.I've only ever had one twang from my ITB.They're only linked in that the ITB inserts partly on outside of kneecap,so if tight,can contribute to runners knee,i.e kneecap pain.Hope this makes you feel better!
    Right now I'd just encourage anyone with knee probs to find a good running physio and try and get to root of any problem that is persistent,rather than living with it.
    I've now started with a good physio and am learning loads more about the delicate balance of various quad.,hamstring and hip musculature, and ITB.
    Seems that VMO strengthening/balancing/firing exercises are going to be the new sex for me for the next 6-12 months
    No running at all,no hillwalking,no climbing
    Best excuse in world to buy new bike though
    Determined plan is to return to mountainous terrain in 12-18m symptom free,rather than degenerating into a swollen sore arthritic heap.Seems this is in the balance;but I enjoy a good challenge.I'll be there!weak-at-knee.

  2. #12
    Master NotOnUrHelly's Avatar
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    Re: Worn out knee cartilage..

    No Hillwalking, Running or Climbing.

    Why not have a go at canoeing its great fun, 8 months practise and Im up and paddling doing 5k races etc. Still a bit wobbly like but have managed to survive a full winter of night time paddling with falling into icy waters. I have just got April high winds to contend with now.

    I'm now got a race calendar of fell race and canoe races.

  3. #13
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    Re: Worn out knee cartilage..

    Last year everything seemed to go belly up. Tore the meniscus in my right knee a couple of days after doing the Howarth Hobble, probably more timing than anything else, it could have gone halfway during the race. Went to physio within a couple of days having done no more running - diagnosis was general wear and tear, i.e. you are a fat old git! Didn't go for arthroscopy but had a cortisone injection followed by a month of doing nothing: "Can I go cycling?" "No!", "Can I go climbing?" "No!", "Can I ...?" "No! Just potter round the house doing as little as possible" Fortunately it coincided with the arrival of the monsoon so it wasn't too bad. It then took a couple of months of very gradually increasing mileage and gradient to get things going again.

    Then in November my left knee began to play up. Off to physio again, taking a medical report from when I was run over and hit on the left knee some fifteen years ago. This time it's arthritis but the old injuries make him wonder how I've managed to keep moving (I didn't think they were that bad at the time!).

    So now, rather than high mileage I try and train smarter - hill reps and the like along with steady warm up runs and cool downs. It's made a difference and probably should have done it years ago. Definitely don't like running on roads anymore and avoid wherever possible and running downhill is more an exercise in damage limitation. With luck I'll have a few more years of running in me but it's as much a case of managing things rather than just going and doing stuff and hang the consequences.

  4. #14

    Re: Worn out knee cartilage..

    It took almost eighteen months from my last arthroscopy to be able to train
    probably because by "running through the pain barrier" on an already painful knee I had trashed the articular cartilage too.
    It went with a pop....***ouch***

    I tried several times to start training in the year
    after the arthroscopy but nature told me I wasnt ready,
    It then took another 18 months, to get fit - and start running
    sensible times.

    I tempted fate by thinking of trading the name "alwaysinjured" for "nearlyalwaysinjured"

    Put my foot down a rabbit hole on blencathra. in Nov 2007
    I carried on , my ankle could not. Something had to give
    in the middle ***ouch 2***.

    Various compensation injuries - calf, achilles caused by
    the damage to the ankle. Finally other knee got progressively worse. so stopped training for several months tried to come back several times and failed . Tried to come back in jan 2009
    on light training after 9 month layoff when knee went with a "pop"...struggling to walk now, let alone run.

    Went through pre-op yesterday for another arthroscopy in the
    next couple of months.

    May not be back at all this time.

    The surgeon tells me I have arthritis in the knee: reckons it has been there some time.


    Been out for 6 of the last 10 years.

    Think the word "injury" should be reserved for anything that keeps you out for 12 consecutive months. Anything else is just a niggle!!
    Last edited by alwaysinjured; 07-04-2009 at 08:43 AM.

  5. #15
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    Re: Worn out knee cartilage..

    Sorry folks working away and living in a wifi and dial-up hole(not recommended but peaceful).Tried to post at work one evening but system crashed and remembered had 2 spuds cremating in oven at accommodation!
    Not on yer helly:Mmm.Like idea of whitewater but not rolling.Bit of wimp when comes to be being suspended upside down whilst suffocating.Think will improve front crawl breathing first!Like Canadian canoeing and rowing tho', so thanks for idea!
    Bob senior:After checking you're not Bob-the-Member(relief):Yes, you and Always injured have got me convinced that quality lower impact training will be only way to go, also being selective about races.Pity,'cos carrying on regardless and hanging consequences so much more fun!Want to get into the mountains without hobbling in 20 years, though,more than need gratuitous descents(she says, somewhat reluctantly).
    Always Injured:Firstly I wish you all the best for your next arthroscopy.I admire your perseverence through so many setbacks.Can't help noticing that our strength becomes our weakness when injured!Hope your surgeon can offer you some improvement.Then I guess you'll have to change your perspective.Think there's a pattern developing here!
    My knee is recovering well post-op.Have excellent knee surgeon and physio.Want to repay their efforts and give the joint best possible chance to recover as far as it can(which will be limited).Then I'll just be choosey with what I do/how much and savour it.Adapt the rest of my life to overcome the weak knee, so I can still do what I really want.Simple on a computer...if I lose this post before it posts, ther'll be no smilie...

  6. #16

    Re: Worn out knee cartilage..

    Quote Originally Posted by alwaysinjured View Post
    It took almost eighteen months from my last arthroscopy to be able to train
    probably because by "running through the pain barrier" on an already painful knee I had trashed the articular cartilage too.
    It went with a pop....***ouch***

    I tried several times to start training in the year
    after the arthroscopy but nature told me I wasnt ready,
    It then took another 18 months, to get fit - and start running
    sensible times.

    I tempted fate by thinking of trading the name "alwaysinjured" for "nearlyalwaysinjured"

    Put my foot down a rabbit hole on blencathra. in Nov 2007
    I carried on , my ankle could not. Something had to give
    in the middle ***ouch 2***.

    Various compensation injuries - calf, achilles caused by
    the damage to the ankle. Finally other knee got progressively worse. so stopped training for several months tried to come back several times and failed . Tried to come back in jan 2009
    on light training after 9 month layoff when knee went with a "pop"...struggling to walk now, let alone run.

    Went through pre-op yesterday for another arthroscopy in the
    next couple of months.

    May not be back at all this time.

    The surgeon tells me I have arthritis in the knee: reckons it has been there some time.


    Been out for 6 of the last 10 years.

    Think the word "injury" should be reserved for anything that keeps you out for 12 consecutive months. Anything else is just a niggle!!


    Im amazed.

    Just 10 days from knee surgery where they discovered a meniscus in tatters arthritic growth and several square inches of missing articular cartilage

    I am already stepping over boxes, walking without sticks, I even trotted up stairs..

    So maybe back on the fells walking in a month or so...

    Yippee....

    But how the f+ck did joan benoit, win an olympic marathon 3 weeks after knee arthroscopy?

    Nihil Illigetemae Carborundum

  7. #17
    Master Danbert Nocurry's Avatar
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    Re: Worn out knee cartilage..

    Quote Originally Posted by NotOnUrHelly View Post
    This is not great reading for someone who has had Runners Knee/ITB trouble for about 15months now and spends more time stretching and strengthening than he does running.

    It quite scary that this thread has appeared at the time that I have decided to just manage it and get on with things. I'm in the mind set now that this is just a niggle that I will carry and may hopefully go away. I was shocked that you have tried to manage this type of thing for about 8 years and now it has led to cartlidge trimmings etc.

    Is it worth me going down this road just for the sake of being a middle of the pack runner.

    Jamie

    Jamie - your story is my story.
    To the Regiment - I Wish I Was There

  8. #18
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    Re: Worn out knee cartilage..

    Good to hear you're on the mend,Always Injured!
    'Tis 13 weeks post arthroscopy for me now- just back from first ever non-climbing trip to Canadian Rockies (booked before injured!).Took road bike and wetsuit and saw it from different viewpoint! Alpine-type road descents were greatLakes were a little chilly - couldn't put my head in-GASP!- some still frozen over - I avoided swimming in these!!...worst bit was 2 weeks in an RV with the inlaws...'tho I'm weak-at-knee, apparently I've got arms like a gorilla!!_as a girl, I'd add that i'm proud, rather than insulted,as intended, by this- also that they're not so hairy..
    Would add that I 'accidentally' walked up a couple of 7500' peaks.This of course was as flat walking as possible...hopped down the first, with a bit of odd shuffling with a ski pole on the scree- thus enabling me to have delayed muscle soreness in my good leg quad for the next 2 days!! How blissful to get back to that feeling!! The second involved some decadent post-holing thro' snow on the ascent, so did the decent thing for the knee and caught cable car down.Walked about 40 miles over the 2 weeks. Sat on a-se this week to let knee recover before return to work next, and normal safe rehab for the next 6 weeks - before hopefully a French alpine cycle trip.Now keep up the physio visits as a sort of straight-jacket to stop me overdoing it.
    Not bad considering ascended a Corbett last Christmas in good conditions and nearly needed a zimmer! I'd say knee only 60% of what it needs to be for return to alpine and rock climbing, 40% for fellrace descents, and still can't even run across road without pain. Have at least 3 more months of being good...back to bike & pool! Good to test things 'tho.Day-to-day knee is 85% now.Goes to show how much more we demand of our joints than the average punter!
    NB Paula Radcliffe says in her book that she had arthroscopy for subtotal thickness patellar cartilage damage at one time, and it doesn't seemed to have slowed her down! It's not the arthroscopy but the damage that makes the biggest difference to recovery times isn't it? Plus the fitness/motivation of the patient? The physio exercises are important.So is not having too long a delay before surgery so you don't waste away! So is having a good surgeon and physio - and you need to like these people too, because it's hard to be motivated if you're depressed/fed up.I've now added a podiatrist to the care team... and I have to really really stretch my hamstrings.Bet I have the tightest hamstrings in fellrunning! Not good.
    Good luck with the onward recovery Always Injured! Keep us posted!

  9. #19
    Senior Member Average Punter's Avatar
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    Re: Worn out knee cartilage..

    Quote Originally Posted by weak-at-knee View Post
    .Goes to show how much more we demand of our joints than the average punter!
    Oh no, I've been rumbled
    Everybody's heart doesn't beat the same.

  10. #20
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    Re: Worn out knee cartilage..

    Apologies for reviving this long thread- but there's loads of knee injuries listed at present,so this history may interest a few people and act as a cautionary tale!

    4.5mths post surgery did 10 days cycling in Alps,about 600miles over 9 tour de france cols, both ways.Pain-free (& fun!).At 5 and 7m did a couple of cyclosportives.

    At 6m I was allowed to try to run, so did 4 miles- but 70% pain still there.

    Revisit to surgeon led to fresh MRI scans of injured and also uninjured(but slightly symptomatic in past under heavy load) knee.Bad news- injured knee has hardly regenerated any cartilage, and other knee is nearly as bad.This was the worst case scenario come true. Full thickness chondral defects under kneecap have a poor prognosis, but we were all acting/thinking positive, post-surgery.

    Options now:
    1. Curtail activities to level of so-called normal person, get a more sedentary career, and wait for the inevitable arthritis and partial then full knee replacements in 10 years or so.(I'm 42 now). As far as I,and I'm pretty sure most of you,go, this appeals as much as a coffin!
    2.Have multiple surgeries to both knees, involving cartilage grafts. Total rehab. time to what I'D regard as normal activities.is 3.5yrs, with about 65% success rate for each knee.For a year, on/off, I'd be on crutches. This could give me 10+ years of further sport before I face the arthritis issue again, by which time stem cell therapy might be more reliable.

    My surgeon is referring me to one of the best UK centres for option 2, to see what they think.This is my favoured option.I'll keep you posted!

    I've kept fit cycling and am going to upgrade to a racy Italian custom-build to help me keep off the half stone I've managed to lose despite no running.Going to rethink career options to challenge myself mentally, saving my knees for alpinism, competitive road cycling, and, I hope, the occasional run.Can still do it! Did 4 miles on flat soft trail this week -last 3 of which were superb- but doing this regularly would quickly leave me with a permanently swollen painful knee and no work.

    My knees are not deformed.I sought help 8 years ago, but patellofemoral pain syndrome/chondromalacia was diagnosed with a good prognosis, instead of cartilage thinning leading to eventual chondral defect- bad prognosis.Physio, rest and orthotics might have helped back then (I overpronate), but were not suggested.This is a difficult area- symptoms are similar and articular cartilage surgery is in its infancy.This time around I went to a different surgeon.

    As a warning, if you have symptoms of patellofemoral pain, seek professional help.Follow recommendations.If you get recurrent swelling/aching- mine was very intermittent and only occurred under heavy loads, and wasn't a big deal, to be honest- take it v. seriously and seek more help from another professional source, until you get to the bottom of the problem- hopefully before you get to the base of your cartilage!

    I'm going to follow Dean Karnazes- "Run if you can, walk if you must, even crawl if you have to (though that might be sorer for me!)- but never ever give up!"- Well, not permanently, anyway!

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