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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Feb 2013
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    3

    Flying after Arthroscopic Meniscus Surgery

    I had my Meniscus Flap repaired on Feb 8 and am looking to do a r/t day flight to LA on Thursday (13 days later). I don't need a brace (been walking on it for a few hours a day for a week, biking, and doing a variety of balance and strength exercises). I'm wondering if I should compress it with an ace bandage that day (another friend suggested taking an aspirin before each leg of the flight). PT and doctor said it should be fine (doctor said it's recovering fine, but did say he normally recommends 3 weeks...I got the impression that was a CYA thing). The PT has been working with me and says I'm pretty far along with the exercises and that the swelling is minimum. Every waking hour that I have not been on it since the surgery, it's been in the cryo cuff. Would love to hear thoughts on this.

  2. #2
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    Nov 2003
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    Are you worried about the change in pressure or sitting in the same position for many hours?

    I flew and skied 16 days post op without any ill effects.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Feb 2013
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    3
    Quote Originally Posted by Shredhead View Post
    Are you worried about the change in pressure or sitting in the same position for many hours?

    I flew and skied 16 days post op without any ill effects.
    Each direction won't be more than 90 minutes, but yes, I've heard stories about swelling on the knee due to change in pressure so wanted to do whatever I could (in the event any precautions would be necessary). The trip there is on Southwest Airlines and I have the first position in line, so I'm planning on taking the one seat in the emergency exit row that has excessive leg space. My PT told me to try to get up and walk around. I know I can do some point/flex with my calves in that seat and hopefully will be able to walk around a little. I just wanted to hear from others on how bad the swelling was.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Mar 2011
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    SW Colorado
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    67
    almost all the swelling is from fluids not gas and air pressure won't effect liquid/fluids. the tiny bit of gas in your body won't cause any problems except maybe the person next to you. airlines fly at 10,000' pressure, 1,000' feet below the parking lot at monarch. my leg was doubled in size from swelling so i elevated it to a footstool and rubbed in some ski cream. 12 hours later the swelling was gone, no problem since. keep that blood moving or the legs will put down roots in front of the tv. i need to go play with my border collie, she keeps me moving. j

    "I flew and skied 16 days post op without any ill effects." since what op?

  5. #5
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    Cabin altitude on the 737 will only be 7000ft. I wouldn't worry about it.


    16 days was a knee scope I had about 10 years ago. I try not to make a habit of it.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Feb 2013
    Posts
    3
    Thanks gentlemen. That's a relief and very reassuring.

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Mar 2008
    Posts
    275
    A blood clot after a knee arthroscopy is a rare complication (some estimate that 1-3% of cases). If you're going to fly, get an aisle seat, walk around, etc. An aspirin has to be something deferred to you surgeon given that he/she knows what was involved in your actual procedure (most simple partial menisectomies have minimal if any bleeding, but again, depends on what was done). If you do wrap an ACE bandage, make sure it's not just around your knee - then it can actually make things worse by acting like a tourniquet. You have to wrap it from your toes going upwards. Best of luck!
    Originally Posted by jm2e:
    To be a JONG is no curse in these unfortunate times. 'Tis better that than to be alone.

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Jan 2008
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    truckee
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    Tore my meniscus years ago at Alta--bad swelling and couldn't bend the knee at all. Fortunately I got an aisle seat with the bad leg out in the aisle (flight attendants weren't happy with me). I was touring 2 months later--I planned a route sidehilling up one side of a canyon and down the other so the bad leg was downhill. You should be fine. (Or given the age of this thread, I'm sure you were fine). I wouldn't think aspirin would be a problem 2 weeks after surgery. (I never had surgery and I can no longer remember which knee it was, so I guess it healed fine on it's own).

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Dec 2007
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    In the shadow of the wasatch
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    2,685
    Bump.

    Had haglunds deformity repaired on achilles on r ankle 4-11. https://www.tetongravity.com/forums/...on to the Heel

    Need to fly slc to la first week of may. Short flight. Surgeon is out of town till my my post op next week. His PA sez cant fly until 100% weight bearing due clotting concern. I asked issit from pressure change or sitting. He said sitting. Seems NBD to me on short flight plus I pretty much sit all day anyway.

    Any thoughts from resident medical experts? Am I gonna die if I fly?
    Bunny Don't Surf

  10. #10
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    Jan 2008
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    truckee
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    OK to fly--due to short flight. I don't know anything about the specific surgery--if you aren't still in a splint or brace and are allowed to have range of motion of your ankle, you can do gentle pumping exercises with your feet--ie just range of motion--to keep the blood flowing in your veins, which will reduce the very small risk of blood clots (in anyone flying) with the added benefit of being highly annoying to your seat mate. You could wear knee high graduated compression stockings--you can get them at CVS, etc. The women's models are very sexy.

  11. #11
    Join Date
    Dec 2007
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    Quote Originally Posted by old goat View Post
    OK to fly--due to short flight. I don't know anything about the specific surgery--if you aren't still in a splint or brace and are allowed to have range of motion of your ankle, you can do gentle pumping exercises with your feet--ie just range of motion--to keep the blood flowing in your veins, which will reduce the very small risk of blood clots (in anyone flying) with the added benefit of being highly annoying to your seat mate. You could wear knee high graduated compression stockings--you can get them at CVS, etc. The women's models are very sexy.
    Thanks OG! I will still be in a boot but will do the flex thing and wear a compresdion sock.
    Bunny Don't Surf

  12. #12
    Join Date
    Jan 2009
    Location
    Park City
    Posts
    2,958
    Take a regular aspirin as well


    Sent from my iPhone using TGR Forums
    I rip the groomed on tele gear

  13. #13
    Join Date
    Jan 2008
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    truckee
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    Yeah, you can accomplish the the same thing by gently tightening and relaxing your gastroc without moving the ankle. The soleus muscle--the muscle under the gastrocnemius is full of very large veins. Compressing the gastroc squeezes the blood out of those veins so that it doesn't have a chance to clot. Elevation helps too--just prop your legs on the arm rests in front of you. Tell me how that works.

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