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ACL tear - leave alone or repair?

post #1 of 6
Thread Starter 

Last April I tore my right ACL skiiing.  My MRI confirmed my ACL was hanging by fibers and was not limited with a meniscus tear as well.  My ortho doc just left it alone and said if it bothered me in a couple months to come back.  Within that couple months I was running the trails at a near by park and tripped and did a major fall.  I broke my left foot, along with stress fractures in my right femur and on both sides of my sacrum.  Three months on crutches, non-weight bearing.  I forgot about the right knee.  Still in pain I found out I have a bulging disk with a tear and major stenosis in L3-L4 in my back.  I take Percocet (more than I want to admit) to relieve the pain enough to get out of bed.  I still go running and am back on skies.  About a month ago I fell again, on my right knee running and fell very hard.  I got up and kept on running.  Two Sunday's ago I fell skiing.  That last time before heading off to work.  It must have been something to watch because they called Ski Patrol before I could even sit up.  I said I was fine but when Ski Patrol arrived I could not stand up.  A MRI confirmed a complete ACL tear and my meniscus is floating around in pieces in my knee.  I have a high tolerance for pain, especially since I'm on Percocet.  The ortho doc said he is going to wait until I have full range of motion on my knee and then do orthoscopic surgery to clean up the meniscus. He said he is going to leave the ACL alone and not repair it.  Beings that I am "52" he said it's not like I'm 25.  He doesn't understand what kind of skier I am or how I run.  I can out ski 3/4 the ski patrol. I am marrying one and we go everywhere.  I am now realizing I have been falling all these months because my right knee has been giving out.  I would like anyone's opinion on what they think I should do.  Should I get another opinion about the ACL or just let it go?  I ski hard, mogul runs and am very gutsy.  I run trails and hills. I am in very good shape.  What do you think???  Can't wait to hit the slopes!

post #2 of 6

First I just want to say well done on coming here for medical advice.  Anyone who goes to an actual Doctor when you can get free medical advice here from guys here named "Stinky182", "Fatskier" or "Bob Barnes" is clearly an idiot.

 

Glad to see there is at least one clear thinking person out there who refuses to buy into all the medical voodoo and mumbo jumbo.

 

My advice...look you need to fix it, but dont get sucked into the medical crap.

 

What you need is this:

 

http://www2.dupont.com/Caulk/en_US/

 

Yup window caulk.

 

Just inject that into your knee, it will take care of minuscus..AND re- attach those ligments...trust me.  I am drunk, online, anoymous, and I have over 1700 posts.  So I must be good.

 

Now to apply just use a horse vet needle. Inject directley into your knee...easy.  Here is a link to supplies.

 

http://www.victor-g.com/veterinary_needles.htm

 

Yup...that is it.  Quick easy and cheap.

 

Now to be fair, as we all know window caulk is only good for 10 years at best.  In a knee cut that down to maybe 5 years.  Hence you will need to redo it every now and again.  My adivice is every 4.5 years is ideal.  Gives you a few months grace period, or put another way a few months of double the normal knee strength of an average human.  Use this time to fight crime, win Olympic Gold medals or impress chicks with your general skiing awesomeness.

 

Hey you manged to stay alive for 52 years, so clearly you have proved Darwin wrong....I cant wait for your next accomplishment.  I bet it will be skiing better then 100% of the ski patrol!  Wow, what a thrill.

 

Good luck and may the force be with you!icon14.gif

post #3 of 6


LOL!

Quote:
Originally Posted by Skidude72 View Post

First I just want to say well done on coming here for medical advice.  Anyone who goes to an actual Doctor when you can get free medical advice here from guys here named "Stinky182", "Fatskier" or "Bob Barnes" is clearly an idiot.

 

Glad to see there is at least one clear thinking person out there who refuses to buy into all the medical voodoo and mumbo jumbo.

 

My advice...look you need to fix it, but dont get sucked into the medical crap.

 

What you need is this:

 

http://www2.dupont.com/Caulk/en_US/

 

Yup window caulk.

 

Just inject that into your knee, it will take care of minuscus..AND re- attach those ligments...trust me.  I am drunk, online, anoymous, and I have over 1700 posts.  So I must be good.

 

Now to apply just use a horse vet needle. Inject directley into your knee...easy.  Here is a link to supplies.

 

http://www.victor-g.com/veterinary_needles.htm

 

Yup...that is it.  Quick easy and cheap.

 

Now to be fair, as we all know window caulk is only good for 10 years at best.  In a knee cut that down to maybe 5 years.  Hence you will need to redo it every now and again.  My adivice is every 4.5 years is ideal.  Gives you a few months grace period, or put another way a few months of double the normal knee strength of an average human.  Use this time to fight crime, win Olympic Gold medals or impress chicks with your general skiing awesomeness.

 

Hey you manged to stay alive for 52 years, so clearly you have proved Darwin wrong....I cant wait for your next accomplishment.  I bet it will be skiing better then 100% of the ski patrol!  Wow, what a thrill.

 

Good luck and may the force be with you!icon14.gif

post #4 of 6
Thread Starter 

I can't imagine injecting caulking into my knee.  I work in the medical field and believe a lot of home remedies but this I just can't do.  Thanks for the idea!

post #5 of 6

I think you answered your own question by coming here and asking for advice.. Obviously this decision does not fit your active lifestyle, and therefore by all means go get a second opinion. You said your doc doesn't understand your activities- it is your job as a patient to paint a picture for him so that together you can make the best decision. I know a couple of very active people near 50 years young that have had ACL reconstructions- and while the process of surgery and rehab takes about a year, most are able to perform at almost 100% of their pre-surgery condition. 

 

If you don't feel comfortable with your current doctor, take your MRI results to someone else. Fully explain to him or her how you live your life and what you want to be doing in the future (like run a marathon or be able to beat your grandkids down the slopes.) Don't let your age slow you down- you're 52, not 92!

 

Good luck with everything : )

post #6 of 6

I agree - get a second opinion. Since I blew my ACL a year ago I've spent a lot of time hanging out on knee injury forums, and one thing that I've learned is that activity expectations should play a much bigger role than age in whether or not you choose to get an ACL reconstruction. There are plenty of folk who were blown off by a first doctor on the grounds that they were "too old" to need a reconstruction, but went on to get an entirely different point of view - and a reconstruction - from a second doctor.

 

To summarize it as briefly as possible, there's a rule of thirds with ACL injury. A third of folk are able to live without an ACL, and continue exactly as they were including all sports. A third can live without an ACL, but have to give up most sporting activities. And a third find that the lack of an ACL leaves their knee so unstable that they can't manage even everyday activities without buckling.

 

From your description, it sounds as though you fall into the second category. Your knee is basically stable, but it gives way when you stress it. And as long as you want to keep doing those activities that cause it stress, that's not good enough.

 

As skidude72 points out, I'm not a medical expert by any means - just someone who busted my ACL and then spent the next year reading everything I could find - from journal articles to personal stories - about ACL injury. My main advice would be to get your knee back to another doctor, and be very clear about what you expect it to be able to handle. You might find that you get a very different opinion about what needs to be done during surgery.

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