Hiking with knee issues

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hgrapid

 
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Hiking with knee issues

by hgrapid » Fri Jun 23, 2017 6:42 pm

As many of you know, I've been hiking for many years and contributing to SP. For seven of the last 14 years, I've had various knee, ankle, Achilles, t-band, injuries, etc, etc, etc. Despite years of issues, I have always been able to hike without problems. Now I found out I have a small lesion in my articular cartilage, which may eventually lead to more damage down the line. The only time I haven't been able to hike is during the last six weeks when a meniscus tear really slowed me down. I got surgery on Tuesday and cleaned it up, but my doc found the lesion and smoothed it over.

My doc seems to think that this won't stop me from hiking. I wonder though, how many of you have knee issues and are still able to hike? As noted, in the years I've had knee issues, I've been able to hike major mountains with little trouble. I was able to hike very difficult mountains as recently as March without pain, despite having a severe tear and cartilage damage. I'd like to think I'm not the only one of you hiking fanatics with some knee issues.

I can certainly learn to live without running. I barely ran for 7 of the past 14 years. I bike and hike normally. But if many of you have some knee cartilage issues, and can still hike, that will provide me a great deal of hope for the future.

Any insights?

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chugach mtn boy

 
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Re: Hiking with knee issues

by chugach mtn boy » Sat Jun 24, 2017 12:51 am

I had an avulsion fracture in my knee 20 years ago (ACL torn out by the roots), which took significant chunks of my articular cartilage off the tibial spine. Although I don't think my doc would have predicted it then, I am doing great all these years later. However, I wasn't doing great till I started hiking and mountain racing (uphill power walking, not running) A LOT in 2006. That, including the downhill hiking component, gave me the quad strength needed to really protect the knee. The lesson from my life is that doing 200,000 or 300,000 or more vertical feet a year is the best protection you can give to a damaged knee. This got confirmed when I had a fall that left a small but irritating meniscus tear in 2012--my knee was scoped, and the surgeon was amazed that the articular cartilage lesions weren't getting any worse over time. So, yes, you can keep hiking, and you should.

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Re: Hiking with knee issues

by atavist » Tue Jun 27, 2017 12:26 pm

I hurt my knee in January and have been on many hiking trips since. Though I probably should have been resting. It's kept me from running, climbing and basketball amongst other things. I finally diagnosed it as something serious after aggravating it multiple times from over use. Now I'm considering arthroscopic surgery but I'm still a bit hesitant.

I hope to heal fully and continue hiking and climbing as before. Has anyone had a bad experience with surgery? Seems most people are back to normal activities within a couple weeks.

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hgrapid

 
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Re: Hiking with knee issues

by hgrapid » Mon Jul 03, 2017 4:37 pm

It takes about six weeks before you can hike again at the same level as before. After my surgery in 2014, my next major mountain hike was about 7 weeks after surgery.

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campranger

 
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Re: Hiking with knee issues

by campranger » Tue Jul 10, 2018 5:32 pm

Many people can return to full activity after a meniscus tear if they have decent physiology and don't push to get active too quickly after the surgery and injure themselves again. Good luck with the recovery


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