Evidentially my problem originated when I was 11 years old and had several occasions of "giving away" of my right knee. The doctor at the time diagnosed "growing pains."
After those episodes I had no further problems until May, 2005 at the age of 41. Again my right knee started giving away and painfully so. I limped and had problems putting weight on my knee. However, it would come and go, a few days of problems and then a few days without, so assuming, incorrectly of course, that I had only pulled a muscle, I didn't go to the doctor until Aug, 2005. The Xray showed the possibility of a lesion on my right medial condyle. Within a few days, I had an MRI which showed a lesion on the articular surface of my right medial condyle which measured 1.5 x 0.8 x 2.0 cm. (As well a Baker's Cyst which burst just a few days after the MRI - I actually felt it burst and had a few days of mild burning or aching in my calf.)
I met with an Orthopedic surgeon and my surgery was scheduled for Sept 22, 2005. I had never had surgery before and was very nervous about it. The surgeon discussed the different methods he might use on my knee, but he wasn't sure until he actually was able to see it. My surgery was fine. I entered the center at 10:00am and by 12:00pm I entered the surgery room, the anesthesia took effect within seconds, when I awoke at 2:00pm, I was laying in the recovery room. My doctor found the lesion to be only partially attached, he scraped the bone that the lesion had detached from and used 2 small screws to pin the fragment to the bone. The description of the surgery performed, according to my insurance records was: Knee Arthscpy Drill dsicans. My incision was little larger than what he was expecting to make and so my husband gave permission for a block. (This block, by the way, left my leg totally numb from Friday, Sept 22 at 2:00pm until Sunday night, Sept 24. After drinking some juice, they asked me if I felt any pain, and I felt none, so they wheeled me out the car and my husband took me home and I went right to bed and stayed there for 2 days. I stayed in bed because firstly my leg was so numb I had a hard time on the crutches and secondly I was given the painkiller Percoset and who needs to get out of bed when they have Percoset! I had an ace bandage wrapped around my leg from the top of my thigh to my ankle which I was permitted to take off on Sunday night. My leg was fairly swollen when I took the bandage off, I had 2 small 1/3" incisions one on the inside of my upper knee and the other on the outer left side of my knee cap. I also had an incision running the length of the inside of my knee cap which was approx 3 1/2" long. All incisions had staples. I was off work for 14 days. I was given 2 exercizes to do during those 2 weeks, which I did religiously. One was to flex my ankle, and the other was to be in a sitting position with my feet on the floor and to put my foot out to a 45 degree angle (impossible to do.) During those 2 weeks I had some moderate pain, nothing that a percoset didn't take care of, I also was required to take 4 ibuprophen 3 times a day for swelling. I found it very uncomfortable to lay on my stomach or lay on my side until the staples were taken out. The big issue was walking non weight bearing with crutches, which I initially was required to do for 6 weeks, and I wanted to address this, because during my first few weeks on the crutches I looked on the internet to see if anyone else had the same problems with crutches and if they were able to work them out and I didn't find anything addressing this. I am a normal body weight for my size and in fairly good shape. The crutches were extremely painful the first 3 weeks and the worst part of the whole ordeal. My palms ached, my forearms ached, my biceps and shoulders ached. There were nights I cried because I couldn't take one more step. I used a heating pad on my arms at night. However, (and here are my words of encouragement - my muscles adapted to the crutches after 3 weeks, and although I can't traipse through a big grocery store, I can get around without any pain. I work in the downtown area of our city on the fifth floor of a building with 800 people in it. And I have no problems getting to my desk, going to the library, etc. However, one problem that has occured, and I am sure it is temporary, is that my left foot swelled slightly due to the pressure of my body weight being on it, which means I can't fit into any of my shoes as my left foot is now a full size larger than my right, but I bought a pair of men's river sandals, they have an open toe and if I knew I was going to be on crutches this long, I would have invested in a nice pair of Birkenstocks. On my first appointment 10 days later my staples were taken out, this is a painless procedure and an xray was taken which showed the 2 screws in my leg. These 2 screws will not be taken out by the way, but they are made of a special material and I will be able to pass through a metal detector. My next appointment was on 11/4. An xray was taken, and although the Dr. felt I was progressing nicely, I needed another full 6 weeks of non weight bearing crutch use. Although the fragment is now screwed into my bone, the object of the scraping is with the hopes of the fragment healing back into the bone itself. My next appointment is December 16th. I will have been on the crutches a full 3 months. I now cheat (occasionally) and use only one crutch to move around the house. Around my 3rd week post op, I implemented my own therapy and started spending 30 minutes a night stretching and doing pilates, nothing weight bearing though. I can now fully extend my leg. I have some mild pain still, most of the time it is brief and doesn't even hit the level of taking a few ibuphropens for. The pain moves from area to area around my knee cap and just above my knee cap. It also occurs if I sit in a crossed leg position with my left knee hanging over my right knee. Evidentally I still have some mild swelling, although I can't see the swelling, I have a thick feeling in my knee every now and then and when I press on it, I can feel the fluid shift away from the pressure. I have 17 days to go until I no longer have to walk with crutches and I am thrilled at the prospect as well as is my husband who has had to do all the cooking, grocery shopping, and cleaning! Because of my age, my fully developed skeletion, and the fact that my lesion clung to my bone for 30 years the possibility exists that this fragment will not heal back into my bone like we are hoping for. I have decided not to think about it for the time being!