Knee Pain Associated with Misalignment of the Knee Joint
Introduction & Background
I chose to write about knee pain and the misalignment of the knee joint, because it is something that I suffer from on a daily basis. In the last 11 years I have had three knee surgeries I have had part of my medial meniscus taken out and then followed it seven years later with the complete removal of the lateral meniscus. Due to my very valgus alignment, which is when you knee joint points towards the midline they then decided to do a distal femoral osteotomy. With this surgery they cut my right femur in half at the distal head and created a gap with donor bone. They then put a plate with seven screws in it to hold the femur in place. When the surgery is complete in my case I was unable to bear weight for two months due to the fact that the donor bone may be crushed or the Plate and screws could break during the first part of the healing process.
More common that the distal femoral osteotomy is the closing wedge or tibal osteotomy this is used for varus or bull legged people, whereas the distal femoral is used for valgus or “knock knee” which is how my doctor explained it to me. In the closing wedge osteotomy All the same procedure are the same as In the distal only this time the surgery is done on the medial side of the head of the tibia.
Although this is a major surgery this can be a very good surgery for a young person because there are not many other options. In the long run this can save a 33 year old person like my self up to 20 years before getting a knee replacement, which my doctor is certain I will need. So as drastic as this might sound it can be quite beneficial. Currently the rate of success on second time knee replacement drops from a survival rate of 89.2% for first time replacement to a 65.1% for second time (Gudnason et al. 2012). This is with a ten year projected life expectancy of the knee replacement (P., Hewlett et al 2007). As you can see for an Active young adult is not a very long amount of time, and my doctor told me that I should expect at least three by the time I am 60 if I was to replace my knee at such a young age.
So where does this leave a person who had this type of problem? What other options are there? Well the first option before getting to the point of an osteotomy is to try and rehab the muscles around the joint. This can be accomplished through with a few different weight lifting techniques. There are many exercises you can do to try and correct the problem. You would do exercises that will strengthen the hamstrings, quadriceps and gastrocnemius. Strengthening the muscles around the joint can be a very effective way of managing the pain associated with an arthritic condition.
The drawbacks of this type of rehab, is that most uneducated people have no idea what muscles they need to exercise to make the joint as strong as possible. There is also the epidemic of obesity in...