I have a bad knee, probably a torn meniscus. (That’s what my physiatrist thinks.) He’s been working on it for a year: acupuncture, massage, a couple of steroid shots. He’s at the point now where he thinks I need to consider surgery. (Which means an MRI, which means orthos can always find some justification for surgery. Between 36-76 percent of asymptomatic patients show tears on MRI.)
And there’s a sizable chance of deep vein thrombosis after the surgery.
So I’ve been doing a lot of reading, and I’m not so sure. Surgery has a 20-30% failure rate, it would put me on crutches for weeks (have I mentioned I live alone?) and I’d have to do a month of physical therapy ($50 co-pay for each visit, which adds up to a shitload of money).
And then we have that famous study which indicates the surgery has more of a placebo effect, anyway.
So I think to myself: “Self, what happened in the old days? Was everyone permanently crippled after hurting their knee?” Seems unlikely, says I. So I do some more reading, and I find that contrary to conventional wisdom, there are other things I can try. Like a cold compression brace, and electrical stimulation to bring blood flow to the area, thus encouraging healing.
So that’s what I’m going to try. I’m really, really tired of limping.