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Knee injury that won't heal with time.

Hello everyone,
My name is Tamika a 16 year old who has recently joined MedHelp seeking advice about a knee injury that i have had for quite a while.

On the 23rd of August 2011 I injured my knee during a PE exercise in which we had to carry classmates across the field while running. I had to carry a girl who was heavier than me and while running it felt as if my knee had snpped back and I fell to the floor due to the pain and instability of my knee. At the time we had a student teacher who was studying Sport Sciences and she told me it was nothing serious and my muscles were simply not warmed up, I sat out for a while as my knee was still painful. I continued with the rest of school the day but i was still in pain.

By the time I arrived home I was basically in tears, so I called my mother (i feel it neccesary to mention that she is a medical doctor) to tell her about my injury. I elevated my knee for the rest of the day and later that night when my mother came hom from work she examined my knee and noted that there was a significant amount of swelling, she however refused to take me to the hospital. The next day my mother tried to make me carry on as normal but only after consistently telling her how bad the pain the pain was did she take me to the hospital to get a knee brace and pain killers (the first of many). The nurses at the hospital gave me a small knee brace and refused to listen to me because the brace was supposed to be tight enough to support the knee. After a week of wearing the brace I discovered just how correct I was about it being too tight because my foot started swelling due to the lack of blood flow the knee brace had created and made it a mission to walk with a painful knee and a painful swollen foot.

I wen to go see an orthopedic surgeon soon after that and after examining me the doctor said I had extremely flexible joints and that could have played a role in my injury, however it was nothing serious and I should not be disriminated from participating in sports and prescribed painkillers. he refused to believe that i had injured myself badly because I wasn't playing a sport that is prone to knee injuries at the time (I did play netball which is prone to knee injuries but that was a few moths before my injury)but according to my understanding the nature in which those injuries are obtained is the same way in which i obtained mine, I then elaborated further on the extent of the pain (walking up and down the stairs was difficult at the time) and he said that i should have a MRI taken as the X-rays showed nothing.

I went to go get an MRI and the report said that I had fragmented my cartilage, bruised my meniscus and there was a possible sprain of the liagments inside my knee and when we showed the doctor the report he said that I was still growing and the injury should take care of itself, happy with the fact that my knee was going to be better i accpeted the diagnosis that I should be excluded from strenous physical actvity for 2 months and more pain killers.
2 months later and nothing... My parents and I decided to be patient and wait until the end of December as the schools were closed and I no longer had any sporting obligations.

Up unitl around February my knee would be on and off, sometimes it would feel as if I'd never injured and other it would feel the same way it did the first day of my injury. Sometimes ( and it still does) my knee will 'give in' and randomly snap back and my knee will start to swell again. So my mother decided to get a second opinion and this doctor said the same thing that my knee would heal with time but sports could still be an option. I recieved no support from my family in healing my knee and they would often just say things like 'its not that bad' and my mother would disregard the pain by giving me painkillers and writing me doctor's notes whenever I was obliged to particpate in sport.

Then, around May, June I decided that I wanted to get fit and healthy, I thought that my knee wasn't healing due my own fault. I set out on my own mission and I would eat healthy (nothing proccessed or artificial, basically my diet consisted of fruits, vegetables and grains) and every night I would go jogging and in the morning I would do yoga. I lost 11 pounds (another conplaint of my family that if i lost a few pounds it would mean less pressure on my knee) and the pain began again this time it came back full force, everytime I bend my fully I hear cracking, it gives in very often, it seems to be forever swollen. Even when I decide to use my lifetime supply of painkillers, they take away the pain but my knee still feels weak like it could give in at any moment. I would accept the doctor's diagonsis had it not been given over a year ago, I understand that a injury such as mine needs time to heal but I don't understand how after a year the symtoms seem to be getting worse instead of better.

The reason this fustrates me so much is because I am young, I want to get out of bed and do mundane activites without having to support my knee, I want to play sports and piggy back my little sister.

My questions are: Is it common for an injury such as mine to take as much time to heal for someone my age? What kind of treatment do you think I should seek? and lastly, what would you do if you were in/had a patient in a situation such as mine?
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Avatar universal
Hi Tamika.
I'm no Doctor. However I share the same injury as you. I injured my knee a year ago while mountain bike riding. My situation is similar to yours. At times it's as if my knee has healed,and I hardly feel pain, but then it will come back all of a sudden. I am also an athlete, and I'm physically fit and very active. It frustrates me, this knee injury, for without it training and competing would be alot easier.

Anyhow, I just felt the need to share my pain with you. My advice to you is the same for myself, and that is to keep training in an attempt to heal your knee. You mentioned yoga and that is very good in my opinion. Keep a healthy diet, and keep doing what you're doing. Also, massage your knee with cream. I believe you can get through this man!
Peace be with you!
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