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Health & Medical UnderGround >> Best course for minor knee injury?

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8/26/08 1:49 PM
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Edited: 08/26/08 2:59 PM
Member Since: 10/8/02
Posts: 628
I suffered a seemingly minor knee injury in training last night and could use some help in finding the middle ground between taking it easy to avoid further injuries/pain, yet very actively working to increase recovery time and return to training. My best guess so far is I have a grade I LCL and/or lateral meniscus strain.

It happened while fighting off a takedown attempt off a single. My partner had my left leg secured in his chest and bent 90-120 degrees at the knee. He was driving forward to finish the shot and in the course of trying to get my weight back & sprawling with my free leg, I ended up hitting the ground with my left leg cradled out in front of me so my lower leg ending up perpendicular to my body during the time of impact and absorbed most of the force. There wasn't any pop or dramatic pain right away. Just kind of a minor ache in the knee. I actually disregarded it and did some ground work not long after without any real issue, although the knee continued to feel off.

I iced when i got home for the night and didn't think much of it prior to going to bed. However the knee pain was a bit more pronounced when I woke up this morning. It is still very manageable pain and is not even in the same league of discomfort from when I tore my PCL or ACL in the past. The pain is most quickly produced when I push on a certain spot on the outside of my knee, or when I rotate my heel counterclockwise to rotate my lower leg inward. I've still got no discernable instability, swelling or decrease in range of movement. I feel like I could likely train BJJ at 50-75% intensity without it being too much of an issue, but I think the rotation or torque of standup wrestling or striking would prove pretty uncomfortable.

I'm on the fence about what to do while I'm staying away from hard training. I'm thinking of the sauna at my gym perhaps. That or some seated single leg lifting or cardio? Or is it too soon to do anything other than sit on my ass & ice it? This is where I could use some opinions or experience. Anyone got similar injuries & details on what route they took with it?
8/27/08 2:30 AM
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Member Since: 12/28/07
Posts: 72
The knee is not just a simple hinge joint. Rotation of the tibia also occurs. It is possible that you've simply got a sprain/strain, but equally possible that something more serious is going on.

Get it checked by a good orthopod or chiro. If nothing is torn, manual therapy followed by PT or some light stretching/strengthening should do the trick. If there's a tear or worse, better to find out right away so you can deal with it while it's fresh.

Last, be patient with the healing process. You are extremely vulnerable to further injury right now, so take it easy until you know what the status is. I've known guys that "just tweaked" a knee, then ignored it and ended up needing reconstructive surgery later. Don't add yourself to that list. Be smart and you'll come out on top.

Good luck!
Jason Erickson
8/29/08 5:00 PM
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Member Since: 3/24/08
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Ehhh I wouldn't go to ortho yet, but i also wouldn't train on it. No pop is typically a good sign, but pain to the touch is an indication of a strain/inflammation of the tendon. I would avoid saunas and hot tubs as heat in general will cause increased blood flow and promote swelling. I know it's often thrown out there, but the RICE method would be a good idea for a few days. Rest/Ice/Compression/Elevate. If after a couple days it's feeling better I'd go back into some light stretching to see how that feels; and then back to the gym as you see fit. Pain is a great indicator when it comes to the knee, and with that in mind pain should also not be ignored.

Rest for a few or risk a tear and enjoy resting for months.

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