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Old 05-07-2020, 06:35 PM   #21
Minnie
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I blew my knee out (ACL) playing football in Jr High, in '82. Wasn't repaired until 2000 and by then, my entire knee was a whole mess and was giving out left, right & centre, sometimes just standing and it would go out from under me. Dr said the ideal route would have been an entire knee replacement, but I was too young, so he did the big repair instead, cleaned up the meniscus, etc; I had the patellar version. It was a rough surgery then, I didn't weight bear for about 5 months, had zero independent movement for over 3 months, intense physio 3 days/week. Had to have a second procedure to release all the scar tissue. My entire recovery from start to finish was about a year.

My husband had the same surgery in 2012, his doc used a portion of the hamstring; his MCL was about 50% ruptured, but they didn't touch it, just cleaned up the meniscus & did the ACL repair. He had a really easy recovery in comparison, the surgery was much less invasive by 2012. He's had some issues the past year or so, but I think that has more to do with his job and how his legs tend to be hyper extended for longer lengths of time. I suspect he is heading toward a knee replacement at this point.

He is still relatively active, has some pain when bike riding. I can't do as much as I used to, haven't been able to since the surgery. I hike, bike, swim a bit but not much else. I can't run at all. The knee is very stiff and has been since my surgery, and I never lead with that leg or put it down first, if hiking or climbing, I don't trust it. I cannot kneel on that knee for more than a few seconds, it hurts too much.

I have heard so many good things even since my husband's surgery. I think a lot has changed even since then.
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Old 05-08-2020, 08:56 AM   #22
Swayze11
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I tore my ACL in 2014 playing rugby and got it repaired in 2015. I didn't go the MRI route but I went to the U of C knee clinic and after they ran some tests they knew right away I tore my ACL. I got it repaired in Banff by Dr. Buchko and went with hamstring graft. I don't really remember having a choice.

Unfortunately the season before I am almost certain I tore my hamstring. Looking back, I wish I went a different direction and not got the hamstring graft. My hamstring is an absolute mess and I pull it constantly while playing hockey, soccer, etc. I wear a brace for field sports or gym sports but I don't wear it anymore for hockey. I know I probably don't need it but it is just a mental game at this point. I used to constantly think about it while playing but I feel like I have got past the mental part finally.

I am fairly pain free in my knee area but always feel my hamstring is tight. I have to stretch it daily for it to feel somewhat normal.
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Old 05-08-2020, 10:42 AM   #23
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Sorry for the derail. But has anyone with knee issues ever tried using a spring knee brace like this or can chime in as to whether something like this could theoretically help to reduce the strain on a knee?

https://www.amazon.ca/Thethan-Patell...8955674&sr=8-8

My mother in law has knee issues with quite a bit of pain and probably could technically elect for knee surgery, but doesn't feel like it and would rather grin and bear it. She said wearing an elastic knee support kinda helps, but not enough for her to regularly use it (I gave her a spare one I use myself when playing hockey. She mainly uses it only when the pain is intolerable). I think she's leaning towards getting the surgery and I'm wondering if the above brace can help get her through her regular activities enough if she decides to delay the surgery due to Covid etc. (Can't talk her out of isolating due to her fears of Covid etc.)

I've been temped to buy this type of spring knee brace to see if it can help her reduce the strain on her knees for more family activities like walks etc. But I'd be a bit more comfortable if someone could chime in vs reading online reviews. My MIL actually forces herself to walk like 2-5 km a day to stay fit and often inflames her knee or deals with a ton of pain as a result.

EDIT:

My buddy who destroyed his ACL wore the reinforced brace below. I don't think my MIL would agree to using this at all, but I was wondering if she might agree to the above product for a few hours a day to help out. (And whether the product above conceptually would even work to reduce strain).

https://www.orthomed.ca/index.php/do...QaAmo6EALw_wcB

Last edited by DoubleF; 05-08-2020 at 10:45 AM.
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Old 05-08-2020, 11:50 AM   #24
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I've had 4 MPFL surgeries (2 on the left, 2 on the right), done by Dr. Heimstra in Banff. I've also had lots of face time with Dr. Buchko and Heard in the many years as well. All great drs.


I've had cadavers and hamstring. Last time (13 months ago) I ultimately had the choice of going cadaver or hamstring and both had failed previously but hamstring was going to get me into surgery in a week as opposed to an unknown time frame with cadaver. Chose hamstring.
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Old 05-08-2020, 12:40 PM   #25
greyshep
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Originally Posted by vegasbound View Post
I've had 4 MPFL surgeries (2 on the left, 2 on the right), done by Dr. Heimstra in Banff. I've also had lots of face time with Dr. Buchko and Heard in the many years as well. All great drs.


I've had cadavers and hamstring. Last time (13 months ago) I ultimately had the choice of going cadaver or hamstring and both had failed previously but hamstring was going to get me into surgery in a week as opposed to an unknown time frame with cadaver. Chose hamstring.
Wow you are a surgery regular!

So how does one get in for a one and done and push all you regulars out of the way for a minute? Secret handshake?
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Old 05-08-2020, 01:05 PM   #26
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Hey guys, thought I would poll the board a bit on a topic that seems to be relatively common among those I talk to.

I was lucky enough tear my ACL (verified by MRI) playing basketball at the end of July 2019. Almost a year later I am still waiting for a surgery consultation to determine next steps and hopefully schedule a surgery date. (all dates now pushed even further out due to COVID )

So having never gone down this path previously, I have a few questions.

-For those who elected to go through the surgical route, are you glad you did? Was it a success?
-For those who had specific ACL surgery, what method did you have done (pettelar tendon, Hamstring graft or Donor graft)
-For those who elected against surgical repair and chose to live with it, what have you done to get it feeling a bit more normal? I exhausted my physio benefits and got it to a point where I can walk normally, still play hockey with a custom brace, etc. But it feels like the progress has plateaued and maybe regressed a bit.

Any other advice for someone currently waiting to make this choice?
To Answer your question for myself
I did surgery, Left knee 2011 (patella tendon used) and right knee 2013 (hamstring used) my second one was done by doctor french, he only ever (at that time) two patients that had one of each, me being one of the two, both of us like the hamstring better. If you do not have meniscus issues you can be walking again rather fast, less than a week. my second knee had meniscus sewn and I was on crutches for 7 weeks. With the first knee it was misdiagnosed and I played soccer, tennis, hockey etc on it before hurting it again. but without getting it fix it would 'blow out' periodically, so I would recommend the surgery if you plan to play sports for a given period of time.
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Old 05-08-2020, 01:29 PM   #27
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Another one here that was operated on by Dr Heard in Banff, but mine was back in the late 90's when I was a teen after getting my knee blasted out in Prince Albert Raiders rookie camp. It was patella tendon and everything worked out great. After surgery I limped around school on crutches for a month or 2 and now I dont even think about it anymore.
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Old 05-08-2020, 01:38 PM   #28
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Lot's of good stories in here so I'll keep mine brief.

ACL, MCL meniscus tear in September 2010 playing squash. (Lame)
Surgery February 2011 with my hammy. (Dr. Heard)
Wore a brace for a few years for extra piece of mind but finally ditched it in 2015.
Apart from a random ache out of the blue it's been great. Full stop 100% non issue in my life. Like casing a jump and putting your knee to your face mid rotation and feeling it everywhere else on your body but your knee because you're getting old fine.

I was devastated when I found out and it certainly took me some time to get my confidence back after surgery but if I knew then what the next 10 years would bring I wouldn't have fretted at all. Well other then the combined 10 or so months away from sports - that sucked.
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Old 05-08-2020, 01:47 PM   #29
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I also race DH mountain bikes and am concerned about the risk of having to plant a foot in difficult terrain or having a high speed crash which could damage the joint either through twisting or impact. I would be curious to know what peoples' experiences have been with not having the surgery and just getting by with the brace, and whether they feel that they ever really get back to 100% or if the limitations of the "bad" knee require a major change in lifestyle.
I can't offer the non surgery experience but as mentioned above I've had no issues riding bikes after surgery. I also used to race DH and have had my fair share of gnarly plants or bails post op and it hasn't been a concern at all.

One thing I did notice is I used to bounce between flats and clips depending on what I was feeling (always had clips on my XC bike and flats on my DJ bike so I'm equally comfortable with either on my DH bike) but now I ride clips exclusively on my DH bike. I find the float in the SPD pedals more comfortable when you've dropped your outside leg in a rough flat corner and the bike is kicking around. On flats you transfer all that twisting motion directly into your foot where as the float on SPDs takes the edge off. Might be worth trying out if you're finding rough terrain uncomfortable.
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Old 05-08-2020, 03:47 PM   #30
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Thanks everyone for all the responses so far. Certainly helps me as I wait to make a decision on this.

Sounds like most people would do it again and its worth it if you are willing to put the work in to rehab it pre/post surgery. Its a real toss up as it will put me on the shelf for playing hockey for a number of months post surgery so I will definitely miss that. Good to have that motivation to get back up and running though. Plus the bonus possibility of being able to add other activities like basketball back in.
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