Torn meniscus, Torn ACL, should i avoid sports?

Posted , 5 users are following.

Hi, i will cut right into the story. I am 23 years old and i had a partial acl injury 9 months ago which my doctor decided not to handle with a surgery but instead told me to work out and strenghten my leg muscles and that it should be alright. I worked out for 3 months and got back to basketball, the sport i love the most, it's my passion and a part of my identity. It was working well for i'd say month and a half and then i had 2 injuries in less than a month and i underwent arthroscopy on my right knee.

After the surgery doc said that he had to remove most of my medial meniscus and that my ACL is now completely torn. I feel good now, i could ride a bike like a week after arthroscopy, i have no problem walking but i am still to test my knee on activites like running or something like that. My question is, could i make a comeback to sports like basketball and tennis, two sports i play the most but that are really not easy on the knee. If i, let's say go for a ACL reconstruction surgery and repair, could i play basketball, not until i am old, but till, let's say, my 30-35 years. Doc said that because of my lack of meniscus my knee is using up faster and that i could some day need a knee replacement.

So, what would you suggest there. I am about to meet with another doctor, but i just can't stop thinking about it and that i could really live a life without my favourite sports, i think that would change me as a person, to bring out something that brought and was bringing so much joy to much life.

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  • Posted

    Here's my two cents and I'm sure there are those who will disagree, so utimately it is your body your choice.  If sports is what you love, have the ACL reconstruction.  Your recovery from it will be less than a year at your age and strength. The trade off in playing sports it is what your doctor said it will wear the cartilage in your knee more quickly, but you're talking knee replacement not for a couple of decades and I'm sure you will have a different perspective on life at that time.  However with medical advances it may be possible to replace cartilage without replacing the joint.  Overall, do what you love because you never know what life will bring your way.

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  • Posted

    ACL will take about a year to completely ready for the courts again. If that's your goal then its up to you to make that decision. Its not an easy rehab. I have been in therapy with a number of young athletes including div 1 basketballers down to high school soccer players. No need to try and soften the blow......its a hard recovery and rehab is tenacious. I thought i worked hard rehabbing my takes and other surgeries but my work paled in comparison to theirs.

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  • Posted

    I can relate to this a bit. I love the "sport is part of my identity" because this was exactly as I felt and still do. From about your age I tore a medial ligament and then in my late twenties tore both my left and right medial menisci in two. We are now talking 1978 and in those days the only real option was to remove them. I asked my surgeon if I could still play football and other sports after and he said he would consider it a personal failure on his part if I couldn't - but warned me I would get Osteoarthritis in later life which I did.. Well I played football (UK) and squash till I was 43 and cricket till I was 60. I admit it was painful in the end and I couldn't run and must have been the most bandy legged athlete of all time! but I struggled round a golf course till last year.

    So if you love sport I would say go for it - you will be miserable otherwise. I don't regret probably wrecking my knees because as you say it was part of my identity too. In fact when my TKR is fully recovered I hope to get back to golf and maybe table tennis and light badminton. I'm 66 now.

    Good luck,


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  • Posted

    Thank you guys, this is very encouraging and thank you for your responses. If ACL reconstruction could bring me back to being able to play basketball i will most certainly do it. And if i could make to till 40s playing it i will be extremely happy. I know i'll take a lot after that surgery but with my love for the sport i think i will do it without a doubt. As you have said it, not playing it would kind of make me miserable, maybe it will be better for my knee not to play it will help me so much in terms of mental health. I can just hope for the best

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    • Posted

      I guess going out on your own terms is the best way to look back with no regrets. My last year of basketball I thought I was still getting off the ground and going for the rim in style. One night I was going for a rebound and was at the top of my jump when suddenly the blur of a guys navel went right past my eyes. I went home that night and told my wife that this was my final year. I had a family to feed and couldn't afford to have one of these young athletes crippling me and I had no interest in playing in one of those 1/2 speed senior leagues. You'll know when your time has come.......and there is no disgrace in saying I'm done.

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  • Posted

    Hi Cans

    I had ACL & LCL repairs April 2016. I wouldn't recommend Sport until you get your ACL done

    I would highly recommend the surgery, you're very young, I'm 54. yet be careful first few months as I tore my hamstring as I fell a few weeks after surgery and my recovery has been put back several months now

    Hope this helps


    TKR right knee Nov 2014

    ACL & LCL repair April 2016

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