Thursday, February 6, 2014

My Knee & Tough Decisions

So I am 13 months post-op from my patella tendon debridement. I knew going into the surgery that the success rate was only 50% but with the amount of pain I was in it was worth the shot. Unfortunately I was in the 50% fail rate. So I have continued to see my orthopedic surgeon on a regular basis (every 6-8 weeks). In any event I had an appointment with him about 3 weeks ago and the weekend before my appointment I started having some major issues. I was trying to walk down the stairs and my knee completely locked up (he said that it dislocated) once I got it to bend again it completely gave out on me and I fell down the stairs. The next day it gave out again and I had another lovely trip down the stairs. That night I had bowling and on my very last shot of the night it gave out and I fell.

When I saw him the next morning he was absolutely convinced that I tore my meniscus (I have all the symptoms of a torn meniscus so this is ALWAYS his answer). So we did X-rays (just so insurance would cover an MRI) and then got my MRI scheduled for the next week. Tuesday night he finally called me with my MRI results and no I did not tear my meniscus but my knee is getting worse. My tendon is holding up nicely from the surgery but is very slow to heal (you can still see the stitch material in my MRI). During my surgery he saw how damaged my cartilage was but there was nothing he could do to fix it (at the time). My cartilage is my major issue. He can't tell how much more damaged it is but we know that it is definitely worse than what it was 13 months ago. Unfortunately the surgery that could possibly help me is very new and there is not enough research to state how long this surgery could potentially last. The recovery period would be absolutely insane (4-6 months on crutches and then 18+ months overall). So with not knowing how long this surgery will hold (ideal would be 8-10 years) he does not feel comfortable doing it but we will readdress the situation when the time comes. So of course his suggestion is for me to quit bowling, I was absolutely heart broken to hear those words come out of his mouth Tuesday evening. I told him when I saw him yesterday that I am not ready to give it up yet. It is something that I have done for 24 years and I just don't know how I would handle being in the bowling center multiple times a week not being able to bowl (yes I did it last year but I knew I would bowl again). He was ok with hearing that :-) He said good for you for telling me your not ready! So he wants to do an injection of some time of lubricant gel (he said it's basically WD-40) but to get insurance to pay for that he had to give me a cortisone injection first. I don't do needles so this tends to stress me out but he really gave me no time to think about it...He knows how I am! Thankfully the injection wasn't too bad and should last me a week and a half to two weeks and then I'll get the lubricant injection.

As much as I am not ready to give up bowling I will re-evaluate at the end of May. I have two leagues that end in April and then Nationals in Reno in the middle of May. If I think the injection is holding and working then maybe I will continue to bowl if not then I will seriously consider quitting. Honestly this will be one of the toughest decisions I have had to make. I love bowling, I love my bowling family, and I love my yearly girls weekends BUT as the boys get older and more active (especially now that Hayden will be playing ball this year as well) I need to be able to get up and move around! I am tired of missing out on things because of my knee!

So that's whats been going on with me :-) CJ is back at work and worked almost 80 hours this past week (because of Superbowl) and the boys are definitely acting out because of it! I am ready for all of us to get adjusted to him being back at work!