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  1. #1
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    Old Age + Falling on Ice = Knee Odyssey

    I retired from all work last September and this past season was my first one going for 100 days. Seemed like a piece of cake until the winter sucked hard and then I fell on some ice in early December. I was walking in ski boots and my left foot slipped forward but my right foot hung up on some snow so I ended up in the hurdler's stretch position. Not good when you haven't done that kind of stretching in a long time. I definitely felt it in my right knee, specifically the right MCL.

    But I was able to walk the rest of the way home and with some ice and Vitamin I, able to get around pretty well. So I continued skiing on it. See my season TR https://www.tetongravity.com/forums/...oing-Skiing-TR

    Once I hit 100 days, I immediately went to see my PC doc who got me a referral for an MRI. Since I was in the Army for 20 years, my healthcare is almost free (about $1,500/year) but sometimes, you get what you pay for. It took 3 weeks to get the MRI done and another 2 to get referred to an ortho doc. Between when I quit skiing and now, I turned 62.

    Just got back from the ortho doc. Mostly good news....

    Went in expecting him to want to do a full or partial knee replacement. His first comments were just that...the MRI and x-rays suggest a full replacement but based on my skiing on it for almost 5 months after the injury, he wants to try a less aggressive approach initially.

    Lots going on in there:
    * MCL shows some evidence of at least a bad sprain or partial tear but it has resolved itself.
    * Medial meniscus is ragged but in place and doing its job.
    * ACL and PCL show no damage
    * Medial cartilage is thinner than when I was a youngster but there is at least some.
    * Lateral meniscus is completely detached and floating outside of the joint compartment
    * Basically no cartilage on the lateral side of the knee
    * Grade 3+ osteoarthritis on the medial heads of the femur and tibia. Range is 0-4.
    * There is a small shaving of metal inside the tibia head. This is clearly from when I had the screws removed after a tibial plateau fracture (TPFx) in 2012.
    * There is some evidence that I suffered another minor TPFx but it has resolved. Not sure about that one because I basically skied on it and I can't see that happening after suffering a confirmed TPFx in 2012.

    Basically, all of the above has caused my knee joint to collapse on the lateral side so my lower leg and upper leg are not in alignment; upper leg points in at the knee joint while my lower leg points out toward the ankle. This misalignment has caused me a crushing case of sciatica but I have recently upped my core exercise regime and that has helped tremendously.

    The way ahead is to get fitted with an "unloader" knee brace that will get my leg bones back in alignment and then hyaluronic gel injections to "replace" the soft tissue on the lateral compartment of the knee joint. These injections are good for about 6 months and delay joint replacement by 3.6 years on average (according to the propaganda from big pharma). Doc liked my idea of biking to strengthen the muscles supporting the knee but not to start until I get the brace because strengthening them when not in proper alignment could do more harm than good. Should have the brace within a couple of weeks and first gel injection is on 7/6. Assuming my insurance provider agrees....

    Sucks getting old but it beats the alternative.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Nov 2003
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    Good luck!

    Just any FYI. Most people donít/wonít wear an Unloader tight enough to help.
    The gel injections help the first couple of times and then Cortisone, becomes more effective.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Jan 2009
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    Squaw valley
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    I've been having ha injections for 15 years, twice a year, and they still work.

    Cortisone damages the ligaments

    Sent from my moto g 5G using Tapatalk

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Mar 2005
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    Ugh, that stinks. Sounds like you will be good to go for next winter??

    Always a good perspective.

    Quote Originally Posted by MyNameIsAugustWest View Post
    Sucks getting old but it beats the alternative.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    May 2016
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    3,177
    Man! Itís stories like these that make me painfully aware that it could happen to me too. Hope you find some relief soon.

  6. #6
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    Quote Originally Posted by powbmps View Post
    Ugh, that stinks. Sounds like you will be good to go for next winter??

    Always a good perspective.
    Looks like it. I went back and looked...I skied 85 days after hurting my knee so I can definitely ski through this. I just wanted to be sure I wasn't making it worse.

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Oct 2009
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    Good news overall, glad to hear

  8. #8
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    ^ Thanks, looking forward to finally meeting IRL...see you at the Singlecross weekend.

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Mar 2019
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    491
    Get better brother! Definitely impressive you made it 85 days with all of those injuries. This has been a tough year on knees!

  10. #10
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    ^ Thnx. Didn't you have a TPFx this year?

  11. #11
    Join Date
    Jan 2008
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    Quote Originally Posted by MyNameIsAugustWest View Post
    Looks like it. I went back and looked...I skied 85 days after hurting my knee so I can definitely ski through this. I just wanted to be sure I wasn't making it worse.
    Every day in every way whenever we play I'm here to say--
    our knees are getting worse. It's just a question of whether we die first.

  12. #12
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    Quote Originally Posted by old goat View Post
    Every day in every way whenever we play I'm here to say--
    our knees are getting worse. It's just a question of whether we die first.
    I thought Dr. Seuss was no longer cool.

    Too many military parachute landings in my youth. My back is likely next.

  13. #13
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    Quick update.

    Got an unloader brace to try to realign my upper and lower legs. Immediate relief from the sciatica pain I was experiencing as a result of the misalignment..

    A week later I got the monovisc injection to provide some cushion to the lateral part of my knee joint. Didn't hurt much going in and after a couple of days of light movement to get it distributed, seems to be working great. I can now walk down stairs with no pain! Going to start riding my bike this week.

  14. #14
    Join Date
    Feb 2008
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    Sounds like you are making good progress.

    Hope that continues.
    watch out for snakes

  15. #15
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    ^
    Thnx!

  16. #16
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    Nov 2018
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    Quote Originally Posted by MyNameIsAugustWest View Post
    .... Too many military parachute landings.....
    .
    hard core Augie
    hard fucking core
    .
    "we all do dumb shit when we're fucked up"
    mike tyson

  17. #17
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    Quote Originally Posted by romeo tango View Post
    .
    hard core Augie
    hard fucking core
    .
    Nah, they can teach any idiot to fall out of a plane...I'm living proof.

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