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post #1 of 6
Thread Starter 
Who's got it? Which joints? How has it effected your skiing? How are you coping with it and treating it? Any side effects to common meds, glucosamine, etc? Any favorite physical therapy and exercise tips? Any new insight from folks participating in this glucosamine thread two years ago? http://forums.epicski.com/showthread.php?t=40773&page=2

Baby boomer starting to have performance issues with one knee, including noticeable atrophy in left quadriceps. Little love from non-skiing orthopedist. Relatively new problem over 2-3 yrs, formerly intermittent, now more constant. Tried off the shelf NAISDs and a little bit of RICE therapy. Recent prescription of Voltaren (diclofenac sodium) doesn't seem to do much. No pain, just constant, mild weakness, stiffness, and swelling in the one knee. Begin annual Apr-Oct bike commuting soon, it usually helps.

post #2 of 6
I used to have frequent knee pain and occasional swelling after several days of skiing, especially if the snow was hard. I've been taking glucosamine complex (just glucosamine) for several years now, and I rarely have knee pain and never swelling. I now ski daily (today was # 111 for this season). Only time I get knee pain is if I bang the knee on something or tweak one in an unusual move.

A friend who had weakness in the quads a while back said it got a lot better after he stopped taking a cholesterol lowering medication (reached a good level, I guess).
post #3 of 6
I have some moderate arthritis in both knees and ankles. I've been doing synovial fluid injections in both knees since 2003. I started with Synvisc, tried another brand, and went back to Synvisc. I've had a few allergic reactions to Synvisc now so I've had to switch again. This time I did a 5 injection series of Supartz, both knees. They do feel better already and I did ski 2 days after the last shot. I don't seem to need the Aleve as much as I did a month ago, which is the whole point of the injections. Glucosamine never did much for me. YMMV tho.
post #4 of 6
I gots lots.

Both knees. Left hip. A couple of fingers. One Shoulder. I'm 43 and have been skiing since age 5 and boarding since age 22.

Glucosamine/Chondroitin doesn't hurt. Not sure how much it helps, but doc says no reason not to take it. Can't take ibuprofen or other NSAIDS because of other health issues so I no longer do that - used to take lots before during and after skiing. Icing joints - mostly knees - after skiing makes a huge difference. Huge. Losing 35lbs this season has probably helped more than anything. Swimming is good exercise to keep mobile. Alcohol makes things bad - green herbal remedies are fine.

I tried Synvisc a few years ago. It was pretty good. Kind of like getting an injection of cortisone. It was expensive and didn't make that much difference so I haven't done it again. It did cut down my recovery time, although it didn't seem to affect pain too much.

Did I mention that icing helps a lot.

I ski/ride ~50-60 days/season.
post #5 of 6
Thread Starter 

Thanks for the commiseration. I guess I am going to continue to bumble along with trial and error on how to manage this. Will try some off the counter glucosamine this summer to see how it might benefit. Interestingly, after not seeing much benefit from Diclofenac sodium earlier in season I took one Diclofenac sodium tablet (50 mg, Voltarin type NSAID) each day during a trip with five consecutive ski days in late March. I did quite well on that trip without serious swelling at night, skiing a light amount of bumps and glades, but mostly a mix of low and high angle groomers bell to bell. By the fifth day the knee actually felt quite good and I skied some runs without a brace for the first time in a couple years. Go figure?
I also did brief, but consciencous leg stretching each morning on that trip, which I sometimes don't get much of a chance to do on my local Saturday ski days.
I have a strong suspicion that one of the worst aggravating factors for me is that other than a couple miles of walking each day, I am pretty inactive during the winter. I sit for 10 hours a day at a desk M-F, then feel stiffness and weakness in the knee every Saturday when I expect to go out and charge a ski slope.

In the spring/summer months I bike commute about an hour per day. I am hoping this will help the thigh atrophy a bit. That is something new that started since I went on winter biking hiatus last Nov.

post #6 of 6
I got it in my fingers, both hands. Use glucosamine, chondroitin, msm powder. All 3 have to be loaded in your system and I didn't feel a response for several weeks. I have discontinued as a trial and really feel the difference. The down side to that is that it takes another few weeks to kick in before relief.
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