Knee troubles

Discussion in 'Hiking Chat' started by tom, Feb 10, 2020.

  1. tom

    tom Thru Hiker

    Strange pain symptoms for some 10 days now just above the right knee on the outside. I have a vague recollection that I may have banged that area against some furniture - definitely not a hiking or sports injury. Symptoms worst after warmth and rest while sleeping. But "warms up" with movement to the point when I don't notice symptoms anymore. I looked up meniscus injuries but its pretty confusing - particularly any info what might be useful to support recovery... Any déjà vu moments anyone?
  2. Robin

    Robin Moderator Staff Member

    I hurt the meniscus on the inside of my left knee in May and it’s been very slow to recover. I’m just about ok now. I went to a sports physio for a proper diagnosis and rehab program. If you’re worried, I’d go and see one.
    tom likes this.
  3. Teepee

    Teepee Thru Hiker

    Knees are structurally complicated and are difficult to self diagnose. I'll echo what Robin says. Seeing someone now could avoid some really bad, like not being able to get to the mountains for a while. There are a number of different kinds of Meniscal tear, some heal up and some will never heal without intervention.

    I too had a medial meniscal tear in the left knee back in Sept just before a big trip and didn't make time to see someone/cancel the trip. It took a couple of months of heavy strapping and rest from kneeling down to fix it. I couldn't walk without the strapping, but the heavy duty strapping kept my knee going pain free and I was doing big miles again in a few weeks wearing the strapping.

    Certainly; reducing heavy lifting and kneeling, stopping putting torsional force on the knee and reducing high impacts is a good idea. Icing, elevation and anti-inflammatories (if you can take them) will likely help.
    tom and Robin like this.
  4. PhilHo

    PhilHo Thru Hiker

    I wouldn't assume it is a meniscus injury. There's some big ligaments on the outside of your knee.
    tom likes this.
  5. Heltrekker

    Heltrekker Section Hiker

    Twisted my knee badly two years ago, torn meniscus on the left knee scuppered my hiking plans for the whole summer - very sharp pain on the outer side of the knee, especially on twisting. Sounds very similar, pain in the morning, wearing off after a bit of mild exercise. I took ibuprofen for a week and the doc prescribed a heavy duty knee brace with metal hinges until the initial severe pain went, followed by physio. I now have arthritis in both knees (earlier training injury on the right) - misery - but now when I'm walking I strap both knees.

    https://www.amazon.co.uk/Reinforced...qid=1581327832&sprefix=thuasne,aps,166&sr=8-1

    I use these, they have a flexible plastic strip down either side to stop torsion but are light enough to fit easily under hiking trousers and are very comfortable to wear (they don't slide down either) and they mean the difference between doing steep 1000m descents like a boss or me hobbling like a ninety year old after 5 minutes downhill.
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  6. Robin

    Robin Moderator Staff Member

    Similar to my experience except I suspect mine wasn’t as bad. It was very painful for about a month and has gradually improved. I used Bioskin knee supports, a neoprene one and a hinged one (which I didn’t use much). If you sleep on your side, them a pillow between your knees helps to relieve the stress on the joint. I use a small Thermarest travel pillow
  7. Teepee

    Teepee Thru Hiker

  8. Robin

    Robin Moderator Staff Member

  9. L2viNkO8SP4

    L2viNkO8SP4 Backpacker

  10. Nevis

    Nevis Section Hiker

    After having a busted knee (cartilage, tendons and ligaments) from an accident in the Royal Marines and having four surgeries to fix it, then ongoing minor niggles for years afterwards i would suggest getting a physio to look at it ASAP and don't try and self diagnose...that wont end well and you'll only end up needing more rehab. A good physio will set you straight with what has happened and what treatment you need to get it sorted :)
    Heltrekker likes this.
  11. Robin

    Robin Moderator Staff Member

    All I can say is it’s a lot easier to walk with one and it seems to stop the twisting. Obviously over time you need to strengthen your knee so you can manage without, but it’s worked for me.
    PhilHo and Heltrekker like this.
  12. Lempo

    Lempo Thru Hiker

    Nowadays prolonged icing is not recommended. If there's strong pain, then ice to dull the nerves, otherwise don't, as this dispels the blood from the area and slows down the healing process. You want the blood circulating as much as possible in the area to repair the tissue. Inflammation is good, chronic inflammation is bad.

    Gentle movement of the joint is beneficial, it keeps the blood flowing and rehydrates the facia and moves around the lymphatic fluid that should speed up the healing.

    Other ways to speed up the healing process is eating quality protein/collagen/amino acids and avoiding sugar, processed foods and industrial seed oils as those are pro-inflammatory.
    Last edited: Feb 12, 2020
    PhilHo, L2viNkO8SP4 and tom like this.
  13. OwenM

    OwenM Section Hiker

    Broke a bone in my ankle and twisted my knee skiing last March. The knee almost dislocated, I felt it pop back into place. Once it had settled down I did lots of cycling over the summer. I worked worked up to doing 77 miles in a day, didn't quite make 100. Seems to have really helped the knee but not the ankle.
    PhilHo, tom and Robin like this.
  14. Chiseller

    Chiseller Thru Hiker

    Flammatories?
    Carnivore cured my knees and aids my rotor cuff.
    Lempo likes this.
  15. Stuart

    Stuart Section Hiker

    Simple, get to a good physio.

    Don't listen to any amateur diagnosis from people who've never seen your knee or don't have medical qualifications!! Apart from me of course....
    tom likes this.
  16. Teepee

    Teepee Thru Hiker

    Does icing not increase blood flow, not decrease it?
    tom likes this.
  17. Lempo

    Lempo Thru Hiker

    When surface of the body is getting cold the blood flow moves inwards to protect vital organs, this is why you get frostbite and lose fingers and toes in artic expeditions etc. When the surface of the body gets hot, the blood flows to surface to dissipate the heat from the core.

    Contrasting those treatments is great for improving circulation, especially on the surface. This is why Sauna + ice hole swimming or snow rolling is used. Ice + heat combined is great, but just ice not so much.

    Here's a great video about why not to ice (except to numb the pain).

    https://www.facebook.com/thereadystate/videos/1032726317088275/
    Last edited: Feb 11, 2020
    tom likes this.
  18. Cranston

    Cranston Thru Hiker

    Overuse? Have had similar well after much use several days later, left knee as well.
    Would have swore same as you it was a bump or knock at the time.
    Last edited: Feb 11, 2020
    tom likes this.
  19. tom

    tom Thru Hiker

    Thanks everyone - mine isn't half as bad as some here. By early afternoon, I barely notice but then its back next morning (to varying degrees). Tried a supportive brace last week but made no difference (friend of mine hiked the entire GR11 with one so I heard plenty of praise).

    So yes, best get it checked. Had a knee specialist physio recommended, passed by to make an appointment yesterday - unfortunately she moved back to Australia just recently - search again

    As to hot and cold - both work great for but for different injuries/inflammations. I usually try both and go with what works ("sure thermal hot & cold" are excellent for both and last forever). Lot of hazzle though so the hot one is a kind of last resort (unless just short term for a fresh injury) for persistent problems.
    Robin likes this.
  20. HillBelly

    HillBelly Section Hiker

    If you say you banged it, then it could well be a bruised bone, rather than muscular. Quite painful/ache.
  21. Rog Tallbloke

    Rog Tallbloke Thru Hiker

    Do you sleep on your back and is your mattress old? If so, try putting a folded towel under your knees for a couple of nights and see if it makes a difference.
  22. Lempo

    Lempo Thru Hiker

    Hot one is easy, get a wheat or rice pillow from Amazon, they can be microwaved and give out gentle heat.
  23. tom

    tom Thru Hiker

    Thanks but alas, no to both :( - side sleeper and I slept in 3 different beds since it started :biggrin:

    @Lempo - the sure thermal just goes in hot water (never had microwave in my life...;))
  24. Lempo

    Lempo Thru Hiker

    I'm not a fan of microwaves either, but they come in handy (with these pillows) when having muscle ache. They are kinder to skin and release the heat longer and are pliable to fit an area like neck etc. I suppose one could use an oven too.
    Last edited: Feb 11, 2020
  25. Davy

    Davy Thru Hiker

    Having had my legs extensively pummelled this morning by my 'sports therapist/physio' to unknot them, another vote for getting it looked at professionally.
    I'm am repeatedly astounded by how connected everything is and tightness in one place can cause considerable pain and discomfort in another seemingly unrelated spot.

    Hope you find a fix soon.
    edh and Chiseller like this.

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