Patient Comments: Arthroscopy - Recovery

Question:How long was your recovery of your knee arthroscopy procedure?

Comment from: JM, 45-54 Female (Patient) Published: August 24

I had arthroscopy right knee surgery on 7/29/2015. I still have a lot of swelling all around the knee and down the leg including the foot. I am less mobile now than I was before the surgery. I have to go down stairs one at a time instead of one foot then the other. My knee does not have the mobility to bend to go down stairs without pain. I have been trying to bend it and do some exercises with it, with not much luck at getting it to move any better. By night time the swelling is really bad and mobility is almost 0 percent at bending it. I feel that if I would have known what I do now I would not have gotten the surgery. I was told that it was arthritis that was removed by scraping if off and cleaning out the rest of the knee due to the arthritis flaking off. This was all due to a fall on the ice back in March, down a set of cement stairs.

Comment from: 55-64 Female (Patient) Published: August 18

At 58 (female) I irritated my meniscus, did not tear it, MRI showed it bulging, the doctor said. It popped on a staircase and I literally saw stars. Too much gardening and working on my feet for years. Doctor said I had 'floaters' in my knee, chips of bone and cartilage, which were irritated by the meniscus so I hobbled around for two weeks waiting for the arthroscopy. I had been in a brace and could not climb stairs or walk most days for 6 weeks leading up to surgery. After surgery I took 3 hydrocodone pain pills that day and have not needed one since (3 weeks). They sent me home with a power pack ice machine that holds cold water and ice and pumps coolness to the knee where a pad is strapped on. It was great, I was walking around the next day. Day two after surgery I was more swollen and spent the day on the sofa but day three was better and I went to physiotherapy on day 4 which was no challenge at all. I left there and returned to work appraising houses the same day, inspected a cape cod with basement and managed steps well. Day 5 was the first day of stationary bike with no resistance, it has been steady progress since. Only a little swelling remains in the evening. Should have gotten that knee cleaned out years ago, I feel great now, and would do it again in a heartbeat; limited down time and minimal pain. Don't let the fear keep you from living your life to the fullest.

Comment from: SE3saint, 45-54 Male (Patient) Published: August 18

I had knee arthroscopy surgery on my left knee to clean up a cartilage tear yesterday afternoon and today I have been able to do very low resistance mobility work on my exercise bike at home and I've also been able to navigate through the 4 floors that I have at my home without aid. I must be one of the lucky ones I guess!

Comment from: Lorraine D., 45-54 Female (Patient) Published: July 21

I had my knee arthroscopy on the 20th June 2015, so not that long ago, but after my knee swelling up to twice its size after 2 weeks I am now left in what I can only say is excruciating deep tightening pain when I walk. It's like a tightening elastic band and I still have pains shooting on the one side of my knee that hurt when I put my foot down hard on the ground as before. I am doing my own physiotherapy as given on a sheet by the hospital but I have to say that after one attempt at driving into town for a short distance I thought I was going to die and just about got home. I only hope that this is not life as I now know it for the rest of my life because no one should have to live with this amount of pain. The consultant says it's absolutely fine and it's in my head. I am trying not to walk as I was doing with a limp, and to bend as I walk normal but that's a task at the moment. I can't go anywhere yet. I am properly fed up.

Comment from: MGM, 75 or over Female (Patient) Published: July 08

I had arthroscopic surgery of the right knee due to arthritis. I was told I would not need a new knee for 6 or 7 years, but would really benefit from this surgery. I had the surgery 6 weeks ago in a wonderful state-of-the-art hospital in Mexico. The week after surgery was a bit painful and I used a walker, but it got better and better. Now I feel I am 90 percent recovered. It is still a tiny bit swollen. I never needed physical therapy or pain pills. I am very happy with my doctor and the hospital and the surgery!

Comment from: Minzer, 55-64 Female (Patient) Published: June 22

I had arthroscopic surgery on knee for torn meniscus. I walked out of the hospital and started physiotherapy (PT) three days later. Three weeks post operation and twice weekly PT and home exercises, I am back to daily activities, going up and down stairs, spinning, Pilates, mowing, etc. Due to arthritis, a knee replacement is a few years down the road. Arthritis is not improved by arthroscopy and this was made very clear to me prior to surgery. Pain from torn meniscus was gone immediately after surgery. Meloxicam works great for arthritis pain and icing works wonders when I overdo it. Downside, no more deep squats and steep stand up bicycling. I can live with that.

Comment from: MGD, 45-54 Male (Patient) Published: June 17

I'm 49 years old and in good physical shape. I had a meniscus arthroscopy (to smooth a torn edge that caused me a lot of pain) exactly 4 weeks ago and I'm doing extremely well. The day of the surgery I started moving the leg (straight leg exercises) and the foot (extensions and contractions) and was walking with crutches (applying maybe 70 percent of my weight on that knee). By day 2, I was walking carefully, no crutches. By day 3, I was going up and down stairs at home, very carefully, being easy on the knee. By day 4, I was using the stairs with no problem, slowly. By week 1 I had starting walking slow on the treadmill at the gym, 10 minutes a day, and doing my normal upper body workout, avoiding free weights and using machines instead. By week 2, I was walking 30 to 40 minutes, at 4 mph. No weight training. By week 3, stationary bicycle, minimum resistance. By week 4 (now), 70 percent of high resistance on stationary bike (2 different types of bikes) and climbing a bench, up and down, no weight but 50 repetitions per leg. No pain, and very little swelling. The key for me was 'pre-operation conditioning', where I worked out the muscle of the leg to give it maximum stability and good strength. I followed all the directions from my doctor (ice, rest, elevation, slowly progressing through the process, and caring for the knee).

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