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  1. #1
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    how can I tell if my meniscus is torn?

    Probably gonna see the orthopod soon, MRI likley to follow that.

    I think I have a tear of the medial meniscus, but is there any way I can tell before my appt?

    Knee pops much more, and louder than it used to
    it feels unstable, especially while walking
    when doing a squat it pops right around 90* consistantly
    kneeling, even on a bed, is painful
    hurt like hell after Id run (have since stopped)
    it is peticularly achey in the morning or after being still for a while
    having any lateral force on it at all, even while sitting at a desk is painful


    any thoughts?
    drmark?


    btw, shotty joints runs in the family, no RMA though
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  2. #2
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    I'll take a stab at it but understand my only medical experience is as a customer and watching ER.

    I think the only way to be 100% sure is to get scoped. An MRI will probably show it but on my MRI two people looked at it and both had differing opinions on the meniscus. I guess it's like an ultra sound and seeing the sex of a baby in the womb; if you can see the stem on the apple it's a boy but if you can't see it it's a boy or a girl. Something like that anyway.

    I think prior to the MRI the path is to see what the symptoms lead to - is ther enough evidence to warrant an MRI.

    Hopefully you'll get a better answer than that.

  3. #3
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    Samurai-

    I do not wish this on you, but by the sounds of your very own symptoms "unstable" could be ACL.

    An meniscus tear should not be unstable, just soar to touch I believe. The pop, pain and unstability is concern. Many times you will not see meniscus tears on the MRI. You can read all of the blogs here that so many folks talk about just that. You will see the ACL in your MRI a the condition of it. I am 3.5 weeks out on my own new ACL and my MRI did not show a meniscus tear. Jsut the ACL.

    Only until surgury did they discover the Meniscus tear. I had no pain, great range on motion and zero swelling. Just completey unstable after tearing the ACL and finished skiing all season on it, only to tear the meniscus later on after a fall filming.

    Best of luck.

    As mentioned, I hope its not your ACL....but it could very well be.

    Drmark, vinman and Tahoecp will give you some good beta......

  4. #4
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    i think i read on here before that meniscus can have instability as well. you arent going to knwo for sure until you go and visit a doctor.

  5. #5
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    God if its my ACL im gonna commit Hari-kiri.

    by unstable I mean that when im walking forward, I have to make a conscious effort to engage my hamstring to my knee doesnt hyper extend. It wont fully hyper ex, but it feels like its gone too far.

    shit

    I have a black belt class weds where I know were going to slug it out for 2 hrs. Well see how it feels during that.
    thanks


    any more thoughts?
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  6. #6
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    postpone your weds class so you dont have to slug it out for 2hrs

    really

    dont do anything like that before you see a dr

  7. #7
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    My meniscus tear manifested itself as an inability to fully extend my leg without a pretty sharp pain just below the patella. The torn ACL didn't really present any pain at all.
    In the long run, we're all dead.- John Maynard Keynes

  8. #8
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    NO TO BLACK BELT CLASS...until you see a DR.

    I had zero pain myself when I did my ACL....Honestly....

  9. #9
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    didnt we go through this a few weeks ago? go see a dr now, so if there is an issue you can get it fixed. why would you continue to do stuff that could mess up your knee more? unless you arent that into skiing and feel like sacrificing the season.

  10. #10
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    I know I need to see an ortho, im going in next monday. Ive backed my training down substantially.
    Other than being told to see a Dr, the last thread didnt help me at all. I want to be more educated on the topic. Im merely asking questions. This time im actually getting answers
    edit: do you love something other than skiing? biking, hiking, climbing? Many people have a summer hobby, mine happens to be karate. If told I had to give one up, i could never choose. Karate and skiing are what I do. I have to make sacrifices for both.
    I am going to black belt class. At this point im NOT going to fight, my knee hurts too much to fight well. I have a fight in August that I dont want to miss almost as much as I dont want to miss my annual trip to jackson in jan.
    /rant

    please keep your thoughts coming folks, i appreciate all of them, even the less than encouraging
    Last edited by skiingsamurai; 06-23-2008 at 08:52 PM.
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  11. #11
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    See a doctor and find out whats going on. You can then make an informed decision of what you want to do.

    Personally, I had to go through a long internal process to decide that I needed my ACL repaired, and part of this process was trying to decide how I could possibly live with 6 months to 1 year of rehab (not being able to do anything that I want). The reason that I decided to have the surgery is that the longer you put it off (and stay active) the more likely you are to cause additional damage to the knee. If you completely destroy your meniscus, a replacement is not available. Sometime in the future, you will either walk with a lot of pain, or you will get a knee replacement. I was not willing to quit doing the active things that I love to do and I would prefer not to have a metal knee.

    If you are really worried about your activities, look at Dr Marks web page. He has people riding motocross in 3 months and I'm sure that you could find a surgeon like him that is progressive.

  12. #12
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    Like others have said, I would also suggest you postpone any activities like karate that could potentially cause more damage to you knee until after you see the doctor and know what's going on. I probably waited too long to get mine checked out and then had to postpone surgery for a while due to life circumstances. Throughout that time I could tell the knee was getting progressively worse, less stable, and I would ended up re-injuring it even during simple activities like losing my balance a bit while walking fast, or stepping off a bike, doing housework etc... As co skier said, if you cause a lot of damage to your meniscus and cartilage, there's not much that can be done.

  13. #13
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    MRI is the best non-invasive way. Period. KEYWORD: non-invasive

    There are good MRI units and bad ones, there are good radiologists and bad radiologists.

    Also, arthroscopy can miss some meniscal tears too. It's in the literature and it's a well known fact: it's uncommon but it definitely occurs.
    Every man dies. Not every man lives.
    You donít stop playing because you grow old; you grow old because you stop playing.

  14. #14
    Quote Originally Posted by skiingsamurai View Post
    edit: do you love something other than skiing? biking, hiking, climbing? Many people have a summer hobby, mine happens to be karate. If told I had to give one up, i could never choose. Karate and skiing are what I do. I have to make sacrifices for both.
    I am going to black belt class. At this point im NOT going to fight, my knee hurts too much to fight well. I have a fight in August that I dont want to miss almost as much as I dont want to miss my annual trip to jackson in jan.
    /rant

    please keep your thoughts coming folks, i appreciate all of them, even the less than encouraging
    Even if it's your ACL AND your meniscus, there is no reason you can't ski and do karate again. There's a kid at the PT clinic I go to who tore his ACL less than a year ago and now he's trying out for college soccer teams. Remember Ki-Jana Carter, running back for Cincinnati? Tore his ACL in his very first NFL game and came back to play football again. Granted, he had knee problems afterwards that eventually forced him out of the NFL, but he was playing freaking professional football on a repaired ACL! If he can do that, there's no reason you can't recreationally ski and kick people in the face.

    On a side note, I was reminded by my PT the other day that I basically had a knee reconstruction. Despite that and the fact that I'm only about 3.5 months out of surgery, I feel like I could go ice skating right now - with my knee still feeling less than 50%. There's no doubt in my mind that I'll be skiing, playing hockey, etc. again. Maybe not soon, but eventually. The point is, if your leg is still attached and you're not dead, you'll be fine.
    Last edited by SponsoredByDuctTape; 06-24-2008 at 11:50 PM.

  15. #15
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    You're not getting caught up in that old saying that even if you have one leg left, you can still fight. are you?
    Cause it's really better to have both. If you have insurance, you should be gettin on those diagnostics.
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  16. #16
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    I probably am to a degree. Its something I have to watch because of my past. While testing for black belt I had a severe shoulder injury to the point where I dislocated it and reset it twice during the 48 hr test. I pushed it so hard that I damaged nearly everything in there. Im sure that the surgery fixed most of the problems, but by not stopping and injuring it further, ill be paying for the rest of my life.

    I will go to class tonight, but probably wont fight, definitly wont be kicking with either leg. It feels like shit right now, so I might not even be stretching out tonight, just watching.

    It feels weird. When doing different motions it hurts in different places. walking is the inside front, going down stairs its the outside, last night walkign was the whole back of the knee. And right now just sitting here its centered under the patella
    what the hell is goign on there?
    T-5 days to orthopod
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  17. #17
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    do you or did you have the following:

    specific and sudden onset of pain/swelling and other symptoms

    mechanical locking of the knee

    catch/click/lock/giving way sensations (not reflex inhibition of the muscle caused by pain,differnt type of giving way sensation)

    knee effusion (large watery swelling)

    pain to the touch on the joint line either medial or lateral side

    pain with deep flexion of the knee

    if you have some or most of these you might have a meniscus tear


    Do you have pain under the patella

    vague onset of pain and symptoms

    grinding sensation with knee motion

    pain with stairs

    pain with keeping the knee flexed for long periods of time

    pain with resisted knee extension

    achy burning pain under the patella

    if you have some or most of these it is more likely patello-femoral syndrome.

    the two can easily be confused by someone who doesn't know what they are looking at. As you know best bet is ortho exam and them maybe MRI if physical exam and history indicate.
    fighting gravity on a daily basis

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  18. #18
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    Quote Originally Posted by Vinman View Post
    do you or did you have the following:

    specific and sudden onset of pain/swelling and other symptoms

    mechanical locking of the knee

    catch/click/lock/giving way sensations (not reflex inhibition of the muscle caused by pain,differnt type of giving way sensation)

    knee effusion (large watery swelling)

    pain to the touch on the joint line either medial or lateral side

    pain with deep flexion of the knee

    if you have some or most of these you might have a meniscus tear


    Do you have pain under the patella

    vague onset of pain and symptoms

    grinding sensation with knee motion

    pain with stairs

    pain with keeping the knee flexed for long periods of time

    pain with resisted knee extension

    achy burning pain under the patella

    if you have some or most of these it is more likely patello-femoral syndrome.

    the two can easily be confused by someone who doesn't know what they are looking at. As you know best bet is ortho exam and them maybe MRI if physical exam and history indicate.
    not instant, but it does come on quickly. not a sharp pain

    no locking

    clicks a lot, pretty much every step theres a minor click

    little swelling, not too bad though

    yep, pain in the medial side most of the time, lateral at times too

    sometimes

    patella: only after running, it hurt so badly I could barely stand (no longer running)

    hurts/ aches most of the time

    no grinding, but at 25ish degrees it pops/clicks ever time i extend it

    stairs hurt going up and down, medial and lateral

    only when at an angle ( torque on knee, not when the knee is inline with my body

    no pain with extension

    no real aching there, no burning at all


    karate went well, no kicking at all, very light sparring, it hurts, but no more than if I just walked around the house.

    time for advil and ice

    thanks guys, not looking forward to the orthopod's diagnosis
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  19. #19
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    Maybe monoarticular gonococcal arthritis?


    Seriously, good luck.
    Every man dies. Not every man lives.
    You donít stop playing because you grow old; you grow old because you stop playing.

  20. #20
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    when I tore my medial meniscus, my knee swelled up with blood and walking was a mother fucker (read I could barely walk). Had an MRI and was under the knife later that day. Recovery isnt as bad as other probs you could be facing. I got on the PT as soon as I could and just worked on getting rotation back. I had rollers then for my bike but picked up something stationary so I didnt have to worry about balance while spinning. Hope its not an ACL. All those questions people pose bout ACLs has me a bit worried, my left knee pops like a mother focker. I know something isnt right
    パウダーバカ!!

  21. #21
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    Quote Originally Posted by skiingsamurai
    thanks guys, not looking forward to the orthopod's diagnosis
    Good luck and keep us posted on what you find out.

  22. #22
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    I had the orthopod appointment yesterday and...
    he wants an MRI, as I assumed he would, but he thinks its a torn meniscus (medial) and patellar cartilage.
    Making the MRI apt today. Dr said that lite prehab is ok, light weights and biking.
    Assuming this needs surgery, im going to wait till early sept when im back in VT so I can see Slauterbeck in burlington.

    thoughts? procedures I should read up on?
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  23. #23
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    the doc's assessment makes sense to me. From your description you had the symptoms for both patello-femoral syndrome and meniscus tear.

    Don't go jumping off bridges yet. Have the MRI then worry about what to do about it.
    fighting gravity on a daily basis

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  24. #24
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    mri was 5 hrs ago. follow up apt is monday evening

    praying to ullr
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  25. #25
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    Wishin you the best, bro.
    I am quite aware of the inconvenience and necessity of getting that handled.
    Don't wait so long you hurt it more.
    We don't make the snow. We just make it more enjoyable.


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