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Knee Cap(patella) Misaligned. Anyone Had This Before? How Did You Recover?" Runners Knee"

Discussion in 'Health Issues' started by gknew, Oct 20, 2019.

  1. gknew

    gknew Gold IL'ite

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    Hi,
    I was having leg pain for past one and a half months. I was walking vigorously for 3 to 4 weeks prior to that. Haven't walked much before. Just started walking after a long gap:(
    It was like walking up and down the roads(hilly roads). So it puts so much pressure on my knees and it started hurting with some cramping and stiffness. I also have some Varicose veins in that leg. So, I thought it's paining because of the Varicose. And went to a vein clinic and had an ultrasound last month. And there was no blood clots in my veins.

    I was having the constant dull and burning pain in the knee and the lower leg.
    And fast forward to this week, I had some swelling on top of the knee for past 8 days. The swelling is the same and didn't increase and no pain. My knee hurts whenever I climb stairs. This is happening for past one month. Also I hear some popping or snapping sound from the knee and it gives a instant relief.

    I visited my PCP last week to check this swelling and leg stiffness along with burning pain in knee. She said it's like Patellofemoral syndrome. And told me to do some knee exercises and put on braces.
    But the burning pain was like throughout the day and my thigh felt so stiff. So I got an appointment with a sports medicine doctor who is also orthopedic.

    I saw the sports medicine doctor yesterday and they said I need an x-ray as part of the protocol. And x-ray showed that my right knee cap is moved towards right side a bit and not aligned to the center. They gave me few exercises in a sheet to follow to strengthen the muscles to keep the patella aligned.
    But the doctor was not sure why I have a little bit swelling on top of the knee and she touched above my knee area and said it's very hard compared to the other leg and ordered me MRI. So, she said come back after MRI. I really don't know if I need MRI. She didn't answer anything completely and wanted MRI to be done. I don't know this is how Ortho or sports medicine doctors work with this protocol in the US. I have to check the MRI imaging cost and the insurance coverage.

    My two concerns were the burning sensation in knee and the swelling on top of knee. But the doctor didn't answer to that. She said I have to see MRI and will see what can be done after that.

    And the diagnosis in the MRI order form was mentioned as beningn neoplasm of soft tissues of lower limb. I am not sure what's this. She told me that I need MRI since the area above knee is little hard and that's little swollen. There is no pain in the swollen area. Only the burning pain is there.

    Anyone had patella misaligned before? How did you recover from it? How long does it take to recover? Did you go to PT for? this Do we need to consult physical therapist (PT) for this? Any input is really appreciated. Is MRI necessary?
    Thank you for reading. Sorry for long post.
     
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  2. Anusha2917

    Anusha2917 IL Hall of Fame

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    Hi.. Thought my inputs would help you.
    Repeated running on the thread mill resulted in a similar kind of a pain for my husband.
    He's still young in late thirties. But the kind of walking you have mentioned and the kind of running in the thread mill should be avoided. It's not good for the knee.

    Coming to diagnosis : the pain was on and off and was there for a very long time (4 to 5 years) . Last year we had two x rays and 2 MRIs at a renowned doctor's orthopedic centre and it came out that a particular location where the pain was there was not getting highlighted in the images of the MRI. Medicines were prescribed for the pain and it gave temporary relief.
    So around a month back (when the pain peaked) we again went to a sports medicine center and consulted a knee specialist. After a detailed MRI this was diagnosed :
    1) Slight alignment change in the knee
    2) Calcium deposit in the knee. This was pushing the bone towards the right and alignment slightly was changing because of this.
    3) Cartilage rubbing resulting in increase of friction between the joints resulting in the extreme pain.

    He had a surgery for the above and in recovery stage now...
    Surgery was minor one called arthroscopic surgery .
    1) Alignment was slightly modified. 2) Cartilage was trimmed neatly so that the rubbing doesn't cause pain ..
    3) however during the surgery they realised that pin hole cut (arthroscopic) was not enough for them to locate the calcium deposit. So they made a cut of around 4 cm, located the calcium and removed the excess deposit.
    Now he's recovering after the surgery and undergoing physiotherapy for the same .
    Doctor said since he's still young a problem in his knees until his 60s shouldn't be expected and he needs to strengthen the knee with a lot of strength exercises. (running to be avoided).

    Coming to you :
    Yes an MRI is very much necessary to understand the reason. As I mentioned two of our MRIs didn't yield a proper conclusion. Only the third did. So yes go for an MRI at a proper place and insist to the doctor to specify the exact location for proper images. Third time I insisted that location be mentioned correctly in the prescription so thst we get images at the right location. The third MRI was a longer one than the previous ones and gave good images which was very helpful to find the cause of his pain..
    With varicose veins don't ignore the pain would be my suggestion. ....

    Hope this helps you and P. S I don't stay in the US and consulted the specialist in an Indian metro city.
     
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  3. gknew

    gknew Gold IL'ite

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    Thank you so much for your reply @Anusha2917. I will get my MRI done. Was waiting to check the insurance coverage.
    Yeah. You are right. Running and vigorous activities really hurt our knees. I wouldn't have done that. No point in regretting now.
    I have given some strengthening exercises for my quadriceps and doctor said that might help patella to realign. And she also want the MRI to be done for the swelling and burning pain. Burning pain really hurts a lot. Thanks for your inputs.
     
    Anusha2917 likes this.
  4. shreepriya

    shreepriya Bronze IL'ite

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    Hi,
    Sharing some information about mine.
    I was diagnosed with Chondromalacia patella (X-ray)when i was 19-20 yrs. But at that time didnt have much knowledge about it ( in 90's). Symptom was mild knee pain while climbing stairs. So totally ignored it.

    Later after marriage and child birth, the knee pain started aggravating while climbing stairs. Dr. Suggested for arthoscopy . But my physiotherapy friend didnt advice to go for it. Rather suggested knee strengthening exercises. I used to worry about my knee a lot. Consulted another ortho for second opinion. He also suggested only exercises.

    In my 30's i joined gym, reduced weight( weight was slightly on the higher side) , strengthened my muscles , did knee exercises everyday. Felt much better.

    No in my 40's , have put on lot of weight, knee pain is aggravating, swelling around knee is always there and popping sound when i climb stairs.

    Now i avoid sitting crossed leg. Dont climb stairs much. Started workout now. I dont do squat exercises. Use kneecap if i am using treadmill . I dont walk fast in treadmill.Dont jog much. Do knee exercises. Trying to reduce my weight. If knee hurts after workout i use spray rather than taking pain killers. I Keep track of my calcium levels.Try to go under sun for 30 mins

    Yes ,women are much prone to patella tracking issues. And life long exercise keeps the knee healthy.Lastly i dont concentrate much on my knee and worry about it.

    Take care.
     
    Last edited: Oct 20, 2019
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  5. gknew

    gknew Gold IL'ite

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    Thanks for replying @shreepriya.
    So your chrondomalacia patella recovered on its own? It's the kneecap misalignment right?
    I am glad that you are feeling good with exercises. I am just given a set of exercises to do everyday to strengthen the muscles and to move my patella to the center.
    I don't the exact cause though for the burning pain and told to do MRI. Hope the exercises will help me to get some relief soon.
     
  6. shreepriya

    shreepriya Bronze IL'ite

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    Hi,
    Still i have swelling around the knees and can feel the pain while climbing stairs , sitting crossed leg etc. I still have misalignment of knee cap. Exercises needs to be done forever to keep knee problems at bay.
     
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  7. gknew

    gknew Gold IL'ite

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    Yeah. You are right. Doctor also told me that, once your patella is misaligned,it's prone to mislaign again in the future with some aggressive moves or pressure to the knee. I am just keeping up my exercises. Thank you.
     

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