Torn miniscus

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I have a question. Have had pain in left knee for about 6 months. Had xrays a month ago and got results last week. Mild / Moderate arthritis in left knee. I have 2 tears in my miniscus one 1" and one 1/2" long.. Have been referred for an assessment in 3 weeks to determine course of action. It has been suggested a scope of the knee. I would rather manage this through weight loss and exercise and strengthening of the knee.. Is this possible.. Also I hike alot and play golf (which is where this may have occurred). To replace this exercise I joined a gym in December. I cycle about 10 miles on the recumbent bike and do some work on the rowing machine to keep my knees loose as well as some weights to strengthen my muscles around my knee. But my knee is continually sore and I am wondering if I should not be exercising right now.. Instead...Icing...heat...anti inflammatories.. You know babying it instead of trying to stay active. I was told miniscus tears can take 6 to 8 weeks to repair if it can even repair itself without intervention. Any advice would be helpful.. Oh and I am 60 years old if that matters

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  • Posted

    Torn meniscus take time to heal. Perhaps you should back down on the exercise & baby it for awhile. Scoping is usually a waste of time. As for the arthritis-you are lucky. Not ready for TKR yet. I have had BTKR & though wonderful-they are not the same as your real joint. After the meniscus heals, strengthen that knee as much as possible to minimize the affects of the OA, get a good knee brace to help with stability. Ice will become your new best friend! Stay away from narcotics-don't really make the pain go away & introduce a whole new set of problems. I use alot of arthritis strength Tyelenol, never on an empty stomach & always as directed. I swear by Celebrex to keep me functioning Lose weight-even 10 lbs can make a difference.

    OA sucks. Never thought getting old would be so painful! I'm not a doctor but most say the same thing about OA. Eat a non-inflammatory diet & don't smoke-anything 😃. I'm always amazed at the folks that complain about their arthritis but never do what the doctor recommends. I feel miserable enough to try nearly anything!

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    • Posted

      Agree with thisolegirl - forget surgery for the moment. My partner has suffered on and off from knee problems for many years - torn meniscus and 'mild OA' (this seems to be a cut and paste diagnosis for anyone over a certain age, it is a cover all and doesnt mean a great deal in real terms. We manage it by icing/heat packs, pain relief and anti inflamms and resting it when it's swollen or inflamed. Do lose weight - it'll show the greatest benefit in reduction of symptoms over anything else. Dont over exert the knee, you'll just increase the inflammation. Totally agree about avoiding opiods - they only provide very temporary relief and they are nasty and easily addictive. One last thing - if you're using ice packs do NOT leave them against the skin for too long at a time, it can cause damage to tissues.

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  • Posted

    This from an external website:

    Treatment for meniscal tears depends on the size and location of the tear. Other factors which influence treatment include age, activity level and related injuries. The outer portion of the meniscus, often referred to as the “red zone,” has a good blood supply and can sometimes heal on its own if the tear is small. In contrast, the inner two thirds of the meniscus, known as the “white zone,” does not have a good blood supply. Tears in this region will not heal on their own as this area lacks blood vessels to bring in healing nutrients.

    I also had two meniscal tears which were very painful (but no arthritis). I had keyhole surgery to repair the tears done as day surgery. Took about six weeks to be back to normal. Biggest problem was swelling around the back of the knee but icing helped. No pain meds required during recovery and I am now pain free with good flexion in the joint. I can lie down flat and bend my leg so my heel touches my bottom. Before the surgery getting to 90 degrees was a struggle.

    You can't fix the arthritis without more drastic surgery but it may be the meniscal tears which are causing a lot of the discomfort. I am the same age as you.

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    • Posted

      I agree.. am certain it is the tears that are causing pain.. Just only want to do any kind of surgery as a last resort.. I have an assessment in 3 weeks where I will get more guidance. Just was more wondering what to do till then.. be proactive or rest it.

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    • Posted

      Rest it is the best advice but do maintain gentle movement to keep the joint flexible but definitely no intensive sports or workouts - that will cause more damage.

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  • Posted

    I don't know what doctors are doing now days.

    I had my tears, one in each knee, a year apart starting in 1998. I was 47. They scoped my knees and made repairs. My knees were bad, but because of my age and year, they opted not to do replacements. I had replacements 10 years later. Those 10 years were very difficult for me. Another doctor told me later, that I should have had the replacements. It seems that they can't tell how bad it is until they get in there and see the joint.

    So for 10 years it was difficult to walk. I was told to baby my knees, so that they would not wear out quickly. I understand that most people recover very quickly from repairing the tears. I did not because mine were so bad. I was off my leg 3 months the first time and 2 months on the second leg. I did ride my bike.

    My advice is to listen to your doctor. Do research and make sure you have a good doctor. I know they are doing some things different now than they did in 1998. I don't know if it is possible to let them heal. Mine were so bad, they would not have healed on their own.

    Good luck.

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  • Posted

    At 57, after suffering extreme pain in my left knee following a tennis mishap, and being unable to walk very far, several GP visits, xray and MRI, gave me the diagnosis of a meniscus tear in my left knee. I was also told I had osteoarthritis ("bone on bone, minimal cartilage remaining"). I was given painkillers which I took for several months, which gave little relief. In 2014 I had key hole surgery to repair the meniscus tear, which I consider to have been successful. After a couple of months of wondering whether I had done the right thing in agreeing to the arthroscopy, I was able to walk much better. I stopped the painkillers, and began walking for pleasure, to loose some weight and develop my leg muscles. I've since joined a walking group and can now walk 10 miles. Admittedly with some pain towards the end/next day. Thought I'd share my personal experience of, what sounds like, a similar diagnosis. Wishing you all the best in whatever treatment you receive. (Jacqueline, UK)

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  • Posted

    i am a fit, not over weight 65 year old woman who teaches yoga, enjoys hiking etc. Through normal wear and tear and aging I developed meniscus damage - small tears and cracks plus thinning of cartilage - but not the one on bone, yet. Through my own research I had discovered that surgery is very effective for 20-30 YEAR OLDS who injure their menisicus through sport, BUT not so much for us older folk. My knees have been stiff and sore for a year. LAST WEEK I saw a doctor in Guadalajara Mexico (where I live) for PRP treatment. That stands for platelet rich plasma. GOOGLE IT! 48 hours after injections into my knees with my own blood....I felt amazing!!! AT LEAST 60% better. I will have two more treatments a month apart and then maybe a treatment once a year. I cannot believe how successful this has been! I'm literally jumping for joy! I hope this treatment is available where you live!

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  • Posted

    i am a fit, not over weight 65 year old woman who teaches yoga, enjoys hiking etc. Through normal wear and tear and aging I developed meniscus damage - small tears and cracks plus thinning of cartilage - but not the one on bone, yet. Through my own research I had discovered that surgery is very effective for 20-30 YEAR OLDS who injure their menisicus through sport, BUT not so much for us older folk. My knees have been stiff and sore for a year. LAST WEEK I saw a doctor in Guadalajara Mexico (where I live) for PRP treatment. That stands for platelet rich plasma. GOOGLE IT! 48 hours after injections into my knees with my own blood....I felt amazing!!! AT LEAST 60% better. I will have two more treatments a month apart and then maybe a treatment once a year. I cannot believe how successful this has been! I'm literally jumping for joy! I hope this treatment is available where you live!

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    • Posted

      I know lot of Canadians here come regularly to escape the brutal winters. . Not sure about Canada, I know this treatment is available in the states, and the price varies between $500 - $2000. Here in Mexico i am paying $200 american dollars per treatment - so $600 in total. An Orthepidic surgeon here was going to charge $2450. to attempt a meniscus repair with no guarantees. If you can fly to Guadalhara I would be happy to share the Doctor's contact details

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