Back in July I hurt my Left knee during the Potteries marathon. After the initial swelling had gone down I was left with sharp pains when I knelt down or squatted. These events and symptoms were very similar to those 2 years ago with my right knee and in that case I had torn my knee cartilage, leading me to having an operation. Had I done it again, now to the other knee?
Over the last few weeks’ time has seemed to have dragged as I‘ve waited for the day I meet my consultant with my MRI scan results regarding my snore left knee. Our recent family holiday came as a welcome distraction during the waiting process. Anyhow after this seemingly long period the day was final here. As my symptoms were very similar to my right knee 2 years ago, I was convinced I had once again torn my knee cartilage.
My consultant called me into his office and sat me down with a pleasant smile on his face. I was made curious by his happy manner. He went on to say “I have good news for you, you haven’t got a tear and don’t need an operation.” I had been convinced I had and couldn’t believe the statement and was lost for words.
He went on to say, instead I had mild arthritis at the back of my knee cap. Parts of the cartilage at the back of my knee cap was still fine but in some areas it was thinning. I didn’t want an operation but I also didn’t what to hear something that suggested I needed to start looking after my knees more and maybe reduce my running, my hobby, the thing I enjoy the most. Maybe I would have preferred to have been told I needed an operation in the short term and for the long term there wasn’t a problem.
On my MRI scan he also showed me a grey cloudy area inside my knee cap itself and said it was bone bruising. He described it as having a Crunchie bar, not cracking the chocolate but breaking up the honeycombe inside. This had occurred due to the reduced thickness of the cartilage therefore putting more force into my knee cap during excise.
Oh no, I’m getting older!
I suppose I was never going to get good news today, whatever I was told. In the short term the good news is I can still run, as long as I’m careful. I need to make sure any excise doesn’t cause swelling or I’m doing too much. But in the long term I will have to start to take it a little easier. Deep down I know nothing lasts forever but I still have a large bucket list of marathons and other races I what to run and I long to run for as many years as I can. I’m finding it hard to describe how I feel, certainly a little sad.
On the positive side exercise is good for arthritis but I’ve to try and reduce impact and weight on my knee. He recommended building up muscles round the knee cap to help support it, especially quads and to see a physio to get some exercises to help with this. I suggested cycling in lieu of some running and he agreed this could be the way forward.
At least in the short term I don’t have to have an operation and don’t have to miss some of the races I’ve currently entered. Let’s look forward to this Sundays Enigma “Shaken Not Stirred” marathon and I enjoy the race. I think running is going to have to become more and more about enjoying and appreciating every minute of it while I can and start to get used to the fact that it won’t last ever.
Sadly nothing lasts forever.