Medial Meniscus Tear, Cyst, and Chondromalacia Patella- Surgery vs. Therapy
I am a 23 year old female, 5'5" 110-115lbs, in good health and I have been suffering from knee pain (both knees) for years. I first got an MRI scan of my left knee when I was about 15 years old, 8 years ago, and the result was a torn meniscus (physical therapy was recommended, but I only went a few times). I don't actually recall how bad the pain was then, or when it hurt, but for the past few years my knees have mainly hurt after sitting for a long time. I sometimes feel pain when I walk or go up stairs, but that pain isn't nearly as consistent as it is when sitting.
I finally got another MRI scan a couple of weeks ago (of just my left knee, since insurance wouldn't cover a scan of both), and here are the findings:
Capsular surface tear of the body of the medial meniscus is evident decompressing to a 0.7 x 0.8 x 1.4 m parameniscal cyst...Mild softening of the patellar cartilage is evident. A very small joint effusion is identified.
The doctor told me my options were physical therapy or arthroscopic surgery. I don't really have the time for therapy, so I initially thought surgery was the better option, but after reading about CMP, I think that my knee pain (which is mostly from sitting) has more to do with that. I always thought that my knee pain may just be associated with my low muscle mass, especially in my thighs, but I never wanted to do much exercise and exacerbate the problem if it was just due to a torn meniscus. But after reading that a treatment for CMP is low-resistance exercise for the quads, is it worth trying that, or is it just better to try surgery, considering the other two issues (meniscus tear and cyst)?
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