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I am 61 yrs. old and completed two marathons(Boston and DC) in 2008. A week ago I had a menisectomy done and am slowly recovering from it. It seems to be a slow process with physical therapy. I am just now walking on a treadmill.
I would like to know if others have had this procedure and been able to return to long distance running and training for a marathon. At my age I wonder if it would be best to forgo marathon training and just be content with running 5-6 miles a day and maybe do 10-12 miles runs once a month( along with strength training several days a week). At least I would be able to get some aerobic exercise. I wonder if marathon training would do more harm than good in the long term.
Thank you for any information or suggestions.
Hey Jim! I had a menisectomy performed on my left knee the day you posted this message. I'm getting to the point where I can walk (slowly) without crutches. So you are two weeks into recovery now... how are you feeling these days?
I'm not sure about returning to long distance running--but my physical therapy protocal says at 3 weeks I should have a full return to sports. For me these days, that means soccer and cycling. But if "full return to sports" for you means distance running, I think you'll be able to do that. As long as you stick to your rehab. Did the doc tell you how much of the meniscus he removed; partial or completely?
Thanks for your reply. I had a partial menisectomy done; I guess I'm somewhat fortunate because I was told the surgeon didn't find any arthritis- which may bode well for the future. I'm slowly rehabilitating- doing various hamstring and quadriceps exercises. Apparently the hamstrings are abnormally "tight and tense" which is slowing the recovery. I was told it could take 3-4 weeks possibly longer before starting running again. After running for so many years, it's rather discouraging and somewhat depressing being sidelined. However, yesterday at the library I read several issues of "Runners World" and felt encouraged after reading articles about runners recovering from accidents, inujries, etc. One must remain hopeful, patient and determined.
Thank you for your comments.
I have been told by my dr. that I have a torn meniscus. It hurts. I have been running and walking forever. I was wondering if my running days are over? Can a Dr. really see a meniscus tear on am MRI? I don't even know when it was torn, if it really is. Any advice, please. Being sidelined has really made it hard to think about anything else but fixing this. I a mom of 5 and have to keep going. Thanks
I was doing a 10 mile run when I developed knee pain. Afterwards the knee was swollen and running was difficult. I work as a nurse anesthetist, and I was able to quickly talk with an orthopedic surgeon about my condition. An MRI showed a torn meniscus. As such, a meniscus tear readily shows up on a MRI. The only treatment is to have an arthroscopy and a menisectomy. However, your "running days" will not be over. Rehabilitation will take several weeks depending on your age, physical condition, etc. We take care of students, athletes, young, midldeaged and elderly patients. So anybody can have an arthroscopy done- whether you get full 100% recovery as before the surgery is a different matter. University athletes( VA Tech football players) undergo this type of surgery and also have ACL repairs- they have a good rehabilitation program and return to the field after several months.
Like you running is an important aspect of my life. Whether I can continue training for and running another marathon is uncertain at this point for me since I am still in rehabilitation( 3 weeks postop). I would highly recommend you getting the surgery over with. A torn meniscus will not heal on its own. You will just continue to have pain. I was told by my orthopedic surgeon that continued running would cause permanent damage to the knee and arthritis would also surely develop. After surgery having family support, especially with an exercise regimen, can be a big help.
If you have any questions about the surgery, what happens the first week( swelling, pain medication needed, ability to get around, etc), let me know.
Thank Jim for replying,
Hope your recovery is going well!!
Your advice was very helpful, I am 43 and a mother of 5 kids and have been very active up until know. I would run 5k s and exercise every day. Having the surgery sounds like it is a must. Being injured has really taken a toll on my spirits. I got so much joy from running, it was so much a part of me. I would get up 5:30 am to run and than enjoy my cup of coffee. Now to get up and having coffee without a run doesn't seem right. I guess this leads to another question. We don't have insurance, so having the surgery right away is an issue. I would like to try do what I can on my knee, will this make the tear worse? I don't want to loose my fitness while waiting to have surgery. Aleve relieves some of the pain and so does ice for a little while. Thanks for your help, AZ