What the Orthopedic Specialist had to say

Yesterday I arrived at the orthopedic office about 5 min early, filled out ~10 pages of paperwork and then waited to be called. Once it was ‘time’, I was led into a patient room where a tech wrote down my history until another tech came and took me to get x-rayed.  I had 3 x-rays done: first with both knees together (front), second with my ‘bad’ knee bent in a lunge position (inside side view), and third laying down with both knees bent to get a ‘bottom up’ view. Then I was led into a new patient room to wait some more.

While I waited for the doctor, I looked at my x-rays pictured on the computer.  I’m no radiologist, but everything looked pretty symmetrical.  Finally, the doctor came in and asked about my knee (see Uggg…I decided to call an orthopedic specialist conversation because that’s pretty much how the dialogue went). He noticed my old club team shirt and asked if I was a soccer player. Not anymore, just a runner now hoping to run her first half marathon in October. As a follow up question, the doctor asked if I had ever sustained knee injuries playing soccer and if they required surgery. My answer: Yes, I had a knee condition, osgood-schlatter, for one year when I was just starting soccer at the age of 10.  But no surgery was required and I didn’t have any issues afterward. To read more about why I developed that condition, read Exercising Is My Lifestyle.

Then he went on to explain the x-rays.  No signs of breaks or visible tears, I had good bone density (high five to calcium chews I take every day!) and that everything appeared to be normal.  To assess my knee itself, he bent, flexed, twisted, and prodded  to see if I noticed any pain (which there wasn’t). He did notice that there was less flexibility in my right leg.  Based on my symptoms (pain behind my knee that traveled up to lower hamstring), he diagnosed my injury as a ‘lower hamstring strain’.  If for some reason I still had chronic pain, an MRI would be the next step. Let’s hope I don’t need that…

Prognosis? Good.  The doctor wrote a prescription for physical therapy.  Wondering what exactly I could and couldn’t do at that point, I asked “About how long do I have to refrain from running?” He told me to wait until after I went to a couple of PT sessions, but that in the meantime I could cross train with swimming and biking.  He also suggested the elliptical, but even walking too much bothers my leg/knee.  So swimming, biking and LOTS of stretching for now 🙂

Soooo….I go to my first PT session on Tuesday! I will be sure to document and take as many pictures as I can (if allowed!). Honestly, I’m relieved its not anything more serious 🙂

To learn more about why I decided to see an orthorpedic specialist, see my previous post Ugggg…I decided to call an orthopedic specialist.

Cartoon by Mike Seddon


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