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Dr.Sawhney, Orthopedic Surgeon
Category: Orthopedics
Satisfied Customers: 6894
Experience:  More than a decade of post qualification experience
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I have bad knee pain. It was mild and barely noticeable for

Customer Question

I have bad knee pain. It was mild and barely noticeable for a few years. Then in August, I was crouching, painting trim, and it started to hurt worse. It hurt for about a month, but I could still walk on it, etc. Then in April it got bad again. It hurt really bad for a week, was given steroid pack, and better after several weeks. One or two good weeks and now it's hurting bad again. The doctor said I had chondromalacia, tracking issues, and possibly plica. A friend of mine had a meniscus tear and seems similar to what I'm having. How can I tell the difference? I can't get in to see my doctor until the end of next month, although I do have a script for physical therapy for chondromalacia. I'm also taking 7.5 mg of anti inflammatory med. The pain this time is to the left of my knee in what feels like the bony part. I cannot bend my knee at all right now (tremendous pain if I try). What are your thoughts?
Submitted: 1 year ago.
Category: Orthopedics
Expert:  Dr.Sawhney replied 1 year ago.
I amCustomeran orthopedic surgeon and I would be happy to help you today.
I need some more information from you.
Can you tell me your age and gender?
Is it the right or the left knee?
Do you get any locking while walking or any other activity in the knee?
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
Sure and thanks. I am 42, female, overweight (which I am sure plays a part.)Right kneeI don't get locking (I don't think...not sure what that means...) I do get clicking sounds on occasion that my doctor did notice when diagnosing me last month.
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
I can extend my leg fully, but bending it is difficult and painful
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
Currently the pain is on the left side only I would say. and feels deep
Expert:  Dr.Sawhney replied 1 year ago.
By locking I mean that the knee would get locked in one position and would neither extend nor flex from the locked position.Locking is typical of a meniscus tear and if you don't have it meniscus tear is less likely.
If clicking is not associated with pain you should not get worried about it.
Being overweight does place increased stress on the already weak cartilage of the knee joint.
Therefore losing some weight would definitely help.
I would also recommend you to have an xray.That would show the state of the cartilage in the inner compartment of the knee.
Feel free to ask any follow-up questions.
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
I did have an xray. Some cartilage wearing, but not bad. (I'm not sure if that means arthritis, but the doctor didn't mention it so I'm guessing no...he just said chondromalacia, tracking, and plica). I am definitely working on the weight thing. Do you have any exercise advice for someone with knees like this? I like to take nightly walks, but I am thinking I shouldn't do too much walking with this condition? Should I avoid hiking altogether even if I feel better? (We are camping a lot this summer.) What types of excersie to help me lose weight are considered safe?
Expert:  Dr.Sawhney replied 1 year ago.
Cartilage wear would suggest arthritis.If the cartilage loss is minimal that would suggest early arthritis.
You may take up walking.Take care to walk within your comfort level and that stands for other exercises as well.You may gradually increase the time spent on walking or other exercise gradually by following the ten percent rule.Ten percent rule means that you increase the extent or intensity of exercise by not more than ten percent every week.That gives the body time to adjust to increased stress placed on it.
Stationery cycling with low resistance and cycle seat at high position is also recommended for knee arthritis.
Avoid climbing stairs or hiking on elevation as that causes increased stress on the knees.
You may also consider doing the basic knee exercises explained in the link below.
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
One more follow up, then. What is the difference between Chondromalacia and arthritis? I have that always arthritis?
Expert:  Dr.Sawhney replied 1 year ago.
Chondromalcia is more like softening of cartilage.Chondro is cartilage and malacia is weakness.Therefore in literal sense chondromalacia is weakness of cartilage.It is not arthritis.
If there is loss of cartilage that would suggest arthritis.
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
Okay. He definitely said chondromalacia after viewing xray thanks. ***** will begin physical therapy for that and not worry about it being a tear. Thanks
Expert:  Dr.Sawhney replied 1 year ago.
Thanks and best of luck.
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