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  1. #1
    Senior Member mulchie's Avatar
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    knee injuries? Advice?

    Hurt my knee in a fall. Nothing broken, but it swelled up to an extraordinary size. I've been icing and keeping it mostly imobilized but it's 5 days later I've still got a lemon+-sized protrusion (better that than melon!) and I'm wondering when I can ride again. I biked 5 miles after the fall. Don't suppose that was too smart. But I'd love the wisdom of the over-50s out there.
    thanks
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  2. #2
    bobkat
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    Wonder where the lemon sized protrusion is, on the front, or back of the knee? That could be important. ?In front of the kneecap?
    I'd keep icing, take it easy on it till the swelling goes down, then start back a bit at a time.

  3. #3
    Senior Member mulchie's Avatar
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    It's just to the right of the left kneecap. And I'm taking it easy and sticking with the ice, thanks, bobkat.
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  4. #4
    Hypoxic Member head_wind's Avatar
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    I don't have your patience. I'd have gone to a doc before 5 days.

  5. #5
    tsl
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    If it's been five days, it's probably time to see a doc.

    If there's a choice in your area, see one that specializes in sports medicine. Otherwise, you can wind up with a doc (and treatment and rehab program) where they think 20 minutes a day of mall walking is a good goal to work up to.

    Don't ask me know I know this...
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    Lucky for me, I work at a library and bike to work.

  6. #6
    Senior Member George's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by head_wind View Post
    I don't have your patience. I'd have gone to a doc before 5 days.
    +1
    George

  7. #7
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    I've only had six knee surgeries and one reconstruction.

    The swelling is a reaction to something torn or injured. Either something is inflamed or the joint is producing more fluid to lube the injury.

    Five days later still swollen?

    Get an MRI done.

    Now.

  8. #8
    bobkat
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    Synovial Fluid, MB. Could be an effusion INTO the knee joint, or a ligament tear of sprain, of effusion into the prepatellar bursa, or simply swelling from a simple soft tissue schmuck, or...... Impossible to even get a clue from your description - could be a pile of significant things............or nothing at all...
    First thing to do is to get it examined by someone competent and see if an MRI is required. Then cross the rest of the bridges if/when you get to them. Often a good competent physical examination is more important than an expensive MRI.

  9. #9
    Yen
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    I think the most important thing to be concerned about now is what type of injury you have and what it needs to heal. If you don't give it the proper care, you might have future riding problems even after the swelling and pain are gone. I'd say it's time to see a specialist, now.
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  10. #10
    Senior Member mulchie's Avatar
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    bummer. Appreciate the advice. I think it's getting better day by day. But it's slow. And I guess it is time to see a doc.
    thanks
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  11. #11
    feros ferio John E's Avatar
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    Continue the rest, ice, compression, elevation routine, particulary those first and last items at this point. If you can find a copy of "Save Your Knees" by James Fox, M.D., it will probably provide some useful tips for rehabilitation and for communicating with your doctor.
    "Early to bed, early to rise. Work like hell, and advertise." -- George Stahlman
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  12. #12
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    Quote Originally Posted by Monoborracho View Post
    I've only had six knee surgeries and one reconstruction.

    The swelling is a reaction to something torn or injured. Either something is inflamed or the joint is producing more fluid to lube the injury.

    Five days later still swollen?

    Get an MRI done.

    Now.
    My MRI cost me $1500 out of pocket and showed nada, nothing wrong even though I could not bike and barely walk due to knee pain. Ice and time were the only thing to resolve the problem.

  13. #13
    Pedaled too far. Artkansas's Avatar
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    When you get back on the bike, take it easy. Let your knee tell you the limits. It happened to me in the early '80s. I still notice that that knee is more likely to accumulate fluids.

  14. #14
    Senior Member mulchie's Avatar
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    Well, patience is going to be the key. Not my usual mode of operation. But we learn... we learn.
    thanks out there.
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  15. #15
    Newbie Trikette's Avatar
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    I inured my knee on the job in April. For a month I tried to ignore it and then one day that wasn't possible and I went to the doctor and was informed I needed surgery which I had last month. The longer you wait the worse it gets. Please take care of you.

  16. #16
    Bike Junkie roccobike's Avatar
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    I road three weeks after a fall. A few months later I started having shoulder pain. Now two fingers in my hand are numb, I have pain in my shoulder (separated a muscle from the ribcage) and two docs said "Off of the bikes." My season is shot. Take your time, get back on when it feels right and don't push too hard. I wish I had listened to my own advice. Right now I'm hoping to avoid an operation.
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  17. #17
    Ride Daddy Ride Jet Travis's Avatar
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    My experience FWIW after an overuse injury.

    Rest was good, but after awhile (several weeks) it would hurt if I didn't gently move around, too.

    Stretching and yoga were--and are--very good.

    I still keep my knee elevated a lot of the time. Seems to help.

    The knee was injured in late April. I can now ride metric centuries with only the occasional twinge.
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  18. #18
    Senior Member mulchie's Avatar
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    You guys are great. Not that encouraging! But great.
    I am hoping to do the Pan Mass Challenge with my niece next year. SO I'm going to take it one step at a time. Meantime, a doc in my immediate future.
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  19. #19
    gone ride'n cyclinfool's Avatar
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    Could be something requireing surgery, could be nothing. The bottom line is that if it requires surgery the longer you wait the longer your recovery because you are loosing muscle in the knee faster than you know and believe me - it takes a long time to get it back. I waited a month after a ski injury, thought it was getting better, I was just learning to favor it more and more. It took a long time to get the muscle mass back in that knee. Don't be a martyr - go see a good sports injury doc.
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  20. #20
    Ride Daddy Ride Jet Travis's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by mulchie View Post
    You guys are great. Not that encouraging! But great.
    I am hoping to do the Pan Mass Challenge with my niece next year. SO I'm going to take it one step at a time. Meantime, a doc in my immediate future.

    I'm betting you can do that ride. Having a good doc and maybe a physical therapist on your team can make all the difference. Good luck.
    "Light it up, Popo." --Levi Leipheimer

  21. #21
    Ozz
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    See your health care professional if things don't improve.

  22. #22
    feros ferio John E's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jet Travis View Post
    My experience FWIW after an overuse injury.

    Rest was good, but after awhile (several weeks) it would hurt if I didn't gently move around, too.

    Stretching and yoga were--and are--very good.

    I still keep my knee elevated a lot of the time. Seems to help.

    The knee was injured in late April. I can now ride metric centuries with only the occasional twinge.
    That sounds like a good rehab program, Jet.

    I experience occasional pain around my twice-dislocated (1967 and 1993) left kneecap. What works really well for me are quad stretches (pull the heel up against the buttocks while standing on the other foot) and weighted knee extensions (45 lb. weight, just the final 15 degrees of extension, specifically working the vastus medialus, the only member of the quad group which keeps the kneecap from wanting to wander laterally).

    The knee is technically an articulation, rather than a joint, because the bones do not interlock or otherwise self-stabilize, in contrast to a ball-and-socket joint. Therefore, the tendons, ligaments, and muscles provide almost all of the needed stabilization and alignment. This is why knees are so subject to injury and so responsive to appropriate preventive and rehab exercises.
    "Early to bed, early to rise. Work like hell, and advertise." -- George Stahlman
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  23. #23
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    Get it checked out. If you don't something small may end up causing bigger knee problems to the point that you might have to quit riding all together.

    Now for my hard headed cousin story. He fell at work and his knee swelled and was sore. He went to the doctor and the doctor drained the fluid. He watched the process and a few months later when it swelled up again he went to the local feed and seed store and got a large hypo needle used for giving cows shots and proceded to drain the knee himself. Over the next few years he did this a couple of times and then finally decided that he need to go and get an operation on his knee. He said that the material that came out of his knee looked like rice.

    I don't suggest that anyone follow his self medical practice.

    I don't like things swelled up even if there is no pain because I know that something is wrong and for me wrong has a way of going really wrong fast.

    Hope everything works out well for you. Maybe you can get it drained, pop a few steriods, and heal up fast.

  24. #24
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    Clobbered my knee and fractured my leg while skiing in February. I was in a wheelchair for a few days and crutches for about a month. I was able to ride again a few weeks after being able to walk without the crutches. My advice: see a physician, work out a plan. The two errors are doing too much too soon and not doing enough. Either one means you will take longer to heal.

    The good part is that it feels so great when you are able to ride again. You have that to look forward to.

    Paul

  25. #25
    Senior Member mulchie's Avatar
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    Good news. Though I had to cancel a trip to Colorado today (swelling persisting and my doctorsister said get thee to emergency room or push for an earlier appt with an ortho than Monday..) I had an MRI and all systems are GO. I have major swelling and will not be trying the bovine hypodermic needle (!WHOA!) but the doc drained the knee and said elevate (knee injured take note: ER didn't specify elevate to a level above the heart to let things drain -- so whoops I elevated to the top of my computer tower which did not help)
    before long: Yoga, biking, walking.... Thanks for all the encouragement.
    PAULH in DC you okay now? Sounds really painful!
    . So in the end, you're all right. Get medical help and fast. Take care. THen get back going again. My hospital also said heat after 48 hours (wrong, ortho says ice, ice, ice) and slow movement for me, though I could only say to anyone else afflicted: ortho, ortho, ortho. I saw a sports person, which helped a lot. And I hope to be back riding... well, as soon as is reasonable, which time will tell.
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