My husband damaged his knee during a ruck march 7 years ago and has had trouble with his knee since then. He re-injured the same knee last year when he fell at work. This January he finally got health insurance so he could get it looked at.
Walking hurts, he has to walk really fast so his legs are completely straight. If he walks slower, his knees bend and it hurts a lot. Obviously, he can't do exercise either.
He was told he has a torn meniscus (missing/torn cartilage?), and had a MRI. He's having steroid shots on his knee and has just started physical therapy.
But reading about it, it doesn't seem like it works and may even do more harm than good. Everything we find online seems to indicate nothing works and this only gets worse. I actually know quite a few people who had to leave the military because of this same problem, despite having the steroids, physical therapy, and even knee surgery.
Is there something that works?
We eat bone stock made from tons of cartilage but that's probably just hopeless dreaming.
He's always been fit, his legs are very muscular (he's a Viking god!), he stretches before attempting to work out his legs.
Because he's busy he asked me to look into this for him.
asked byMimi_1 (2954)
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on March 15, 2013
at 08:00 PM
I suffered a considerably less severe (than what you're describing) tear on my inner right meniscus.
After forking over the copay for the initial diagnosis I hit the netwebz and formulated my own rehab plan.
The key is to strengthen the supporting muscle groups. The real key is to regain symmetry. The injured leg will be weaker than the healthy leg due to the latter's overcompensation. Once the injured leg is strong enough to carry its fair share, the meniscus will be able to heal.
Obviously it is important to build this strength gently, so as not to further damage to cartilage.
If you're talking about injuries to both legs I have to apologize. I wouldn't know where to start. I will say that, personally, I always prefer to see a chiropractor or pt rather than an ortho...
on March 15, 2013
at 04:31 PM
I'm not in the military, and my story is definitely a lot different, but I have had 2 knee surgeries on my left knee, due to a torn meniscus, so hopefully my experience will be helpful in some way.
In my opinion, the only way your husband is going to find actual, long term, relief, is by going to a doctor and finding out exactly what is torn, and how badly. Normally this will be accomplished using an MRI of the affected knee. I would recommend that he gets more than one opinion before deciding on a course of action, but if it is torn, the best option would probably be to have the torn part removed, as opposed to repaired. Removal allows for a much faster recovery, but does come with the possible down side of some pain in the future. The repair has a tendency to fail, depending on the location, due to a lack of blood supply. It takes a long time to heal up and requires a lot more down time and care.
My first surgery was an attempted repair, which was only successful in that it eliminated most of the pain and allowed me to bend my knee again, the torn part was wedged into my knee joint, but the repair did not take well and never fully healed. Plus, with the repair, I was off of my feet for weeks, before being able to start physical therapy.
My second surgery was a removal of 20% of my meniscus. I was back walking around within 2 days, and in physical therapy with a week. It's been just over a year now and I am back to being able to do everything I could do before the original injury. I do have some random pain from time to time, but I would say that I am at about 90% of my original state. I lift heavy weights, and squat regularly, with little trouble. Your husbands line of work could limit his ability to truly recover, as long weighted walks are going to be rough on anyone's knees. Long distances runs, in boots, with weight, are going to be even harder on the knees.
All in all, i recommend finding a great doctor and getting a diagnosis, then go from there.
Be careful with joint supplements also, as some of them can cause more harm than good. Gelatin might be helpful though, and I take it normally to help keep what cartilage I have left in good shape