Saturday, September 24, 2011

MRI result

I finally got a call about my MRI result yesterday (it was 16 days after it was done).  The news wasn't that good, if about what I expected.

It showed that the grafts on my patella and trochlea are intact, but there was a significant amount of edema under the patellar graft.  One would hope not to see that 4 years out from the surgery, since it suggests that the quality of the cartilage in the graft isn't that good.

 I didn't speak to the surgeon himself, but rather his assistant.  She told me they didn't think I should be doing high impact activities, like running.

The plan is to repeat the MRI in 6 months, and if it looks similar, to consider taking a look arthroscopically to see if the graft is soft.  But I'm not really sure what could be done about that - I didn't think to ask.

So, the return to running is on hold.  Maybe permanently.  However, I think I will continue to update the blog with my progress on other activities.  I will concentrate on cycling, and I am now planning to make a serious attempt to improve my cross country skate skiing over this coming winter.

Sunday, September 4, 2011

MRI postponed

I was supposed to have my knee MRI last week, but I was postponed, a bit to my surprise.

The week before, we were on vacation in the Canadian Rockies, which was wonderful.  We did a Backroads family multi-sport trip, with cycling, hiking and a little rafting.  My knee actually felt OK, but I would add the qualifier that it wasn't all that rigorous, being a family trip.

 Anyway, on the way home, I tweaked my back lifting luggage.  As a consequence, I was taking some ibuprofen.  The MRI needs to be done with intravenous contrast to get a good look at the cartilage.  Very rarely, intravenous contrast can cause serious kidney problems, although this happens almost exclusively in people who already have serious kidney disease.  Medications like ibuprofen can in theory cause kidney dysfunction, although probably not in reasonably healthy people (I think I am in that category).  At the MRI, I had to fill out a fairly long questionnaire, which includes questions about recent ibuprofen use.  Since I had taken some that morning, they cancelled me.  Kind of ridiculous in my opinion.  Fortunately, it's not exactly urgent that I get the scan, and the facility was right on my way to work, so it wasn't as annoying as it could have been.

The knee feels quite a bit better than it did when I first made the doctor's appointment that led to the MRI, but I will still go ahead with the scan this coming week, since I would like to know what's going on in there.  If it looks good, then I think I will feel I can try to up my mileage & see how it goes.  I only ran 23 miles (but cycled 272).