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Advice for upcoming trip with meniscus tear.

My wife injured her knee in April and has aggravated it since then to where she is in pain a lot of the time. She just got her MRI results and her doctor is referring her to an orthopedic specialist and didnt provide any guidance.

The challenge is we have a trip booked to Disney next week. I don't think she will be able to handle this as it will be days with lots of walking, but as the trip is already paid for she wants to try. I don't mind her trying, but she is stuborn and will keep going with pain and I don't want things to get any worse for her.

Based on the following MRI results, is it likely she will injure herself more if she tries to do a lot of walking:

1. Medial meniscus tear
2. Grade 1 MCL sprain
3. Grade 3/4 chondromalacia in the superior aspect of the patellar apex with small foci of subchondral edema
4. Grade 2 medial compartment chondromalacia. Punctate focus of sunchondral cystic change in the posterio flexion zone of the medial femoral condyle.
5. Small knee joint effusion and Baker's Cyst
6. Mild semimembranosus bursitis.
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Avatar universal
How well she handles it depends on her pain tolerance.  There are professional athletes who have performed at a high level for a temporary period of time.  There are also those who couldn't go at all.  The thing about meniscus tears is it depends on where the tear is.  If it's in the middle, it can't heal.  If it's on the very edge, there is blood supply to that area and it can heal, though that doesn't of course mean it will.  A Baker's Cyst can also cause pain, or not, but that won't get worse.  Usually in these circumstances you would see the orthopedic surgeon and get an opinion on whether or not such activity would cause things to get worse.  If you don't do that, you really can't know.  If it does tear more, she won't be able to walk at all at some point, especially on stairs or hills.  How bad the tear is also determines how invasive the surgery will be.  Many docs will do a simple laproscopic, which allows you to get going again quickly but often just leads to further injury.  A repair is a better option usually but has a much longer recovery, but leaves behind a stronger piece of cartilage.  Of course, over time, it's very possible the knee will give out again, as that's often what happens if you stay active doing things that put stress on the knee.  But it can buy a lot of time before that happens.  Is there any chance, and I say this knowing surgeons hate talking to patients, of phoning the surgeon she has that appointment with and seeing if he can at least evaluate the MRI and tell her if a brace would be enough to allow her to do this?  She's been going since April and apparently can still get around, though it hurts, but again, having had a surgeon tell me I had a torn meniscus and the radiologist tell me I didn't and then another specialist telling me I didn't, my knee hurts and then doesn't and it's been years, but I've never been able to run again and I still can't tell you years later what I actually have.  I was sent to PT.  In this case, though, the radiologist has found a torn meniscus, and so yeah, it can keep tearing.  Whether walking around Disneyland will do that to you or not I can't say, it's not like she's playing basketball or football or something.  Peace.
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