Do they work? According to my GP, they only keep the area warm.
My reason for asking as I have somehow acquired Patellofemoral crepitus (Damaged cartilage at the back of Patella) he tells me, and says to stop or do limited hillwalking and cycling. I asked about seeking a specialist or physio but was told nothing could be done which I fail to believe as I have read articles on this.
In the meantime while I keep badgering the GENERAL Practioner for further help (which could take a very long time) I am looking for a quick fix at the moment hence the knee supports, as any slight benefit I will gladly take.
So if anybody has a similar problem, I would be grateful for the slightest remedy (apart from been told to cut out all my outdoor activities, cause that aint gonna happen) and do knee supports give you any benefit.
Got to go and put the frozen peas on my knee now.
It's worth considering a private sports consult - in general this is about £30-50 and they don't in general spout a standard NHS line of "try 2yrs not walking" as a first step.
Of course if you need anything it would cost but for an assessment and advice it's a useful first step.
If anything needs done it gives you some ammo to take back to your NHS practitioner.
Exactly what I was thinking. Your last sentence I tried to do but the other way round.
To get all info on my knee problem, as i had 3 previous visits to different GP's at same practice, to pass on to a sports consultant/injury clinic to give them any pre-additional information. Trouble is, my practice don't have anyything on file, not a jot and have apologised to me for this (bit late now) so I have nothing to take to for a first assessment but yeah, I guess if I want action a sports consultant is the way to go.
Damon Ritchie wrote (see)
Keeping the joint warm during rehabilitation is very important, it keeps the tendons and ligaments hot and pliable and less likely to re-injury, it also promotes circulation which is all important in the healing process.
I have to sympathise with you on GPs, completely bloody useless, possably the most overated proffesion on the planet. Went and seen my GP a few years back with a leg problem, he told me that if he went up and down mountains he too would probably have a sore leg! went and seen another one she seemed more interested in telling me where she took her dog for a walk.
100+K per year, wouldnt give em tuppence!
Ive had knee problems in the past but a combination of superfeet,walking poles and knee supports has kept me wonderfully mobile.
About 2/3 years ago I bought some "second skin" knee supports for £45,they didnt help me to be honest but then I tried some £1 tubigrips from the local chemist and they work very well.I take them on all my lengthy walks and ill be taking them once again when I do the tour of the Jungfrau in July.Ab Fab and a bargain.
If that warmth makes your knee feel more comfortable, then they are 'working' on at least one level.
The only ones that are likely to 'support' in a more functional sense are the hinged ones like I wear when I am skiing; it prevents lateral movement of my knee joint but after all the injuries I have suffered to it in the past, that's what I need.
I agree with the posters above who specify a sports physio/quack. I had had (NHS) physios in the past whose only concern is to get folk back on their feet. "I actually want to get back to MY normal state of functioning, not that little old man's" is meaningless when their time and resources are so stretched. If you get an NHS physio who is also (say) a runner - like I had once - they are far more sympathetic.
Private sports physios often have clinics inside gyms - you don't need to be a member to attend the clinic - and they aren't too dear. I had a few sessions to treat a pranged ligament a couple of years ago as the NHS waiting time is 6 months round here. I had a full hour each time, ultrasound, acupuncture (neither of which I had on the NHS and both worked brilliantly with the pain) and lots of massage and exercise tips. Total cost was about £150 and I got half of it back through the hospital fund.
And it was an NHS physio, at my first appt with her, who diagnosed the ruptured cartilage in my knee that two doctors had missed when they thought it was just a torn medial collateral lig. She arranged an urgent appt back with the doc for me and I had an operation the following week (when they opened up, they found that I had also ruptured my cruciate lig). That was just one of my knee injuries....
Edited for typos
Even if you go for the knee support -- which do help -- I'd still see a sports physio, or a podiatrist. I advise this cos most knee injuries stem from foot problems, apparently.
I visted about four GPs over as many years before one finally said I was flat footed and that that was what might be causing my knee problems, but had no further advice than that to offer. A podiatrist based in Settle, Yorkshire, called Andrew Stanley, on the other hand (or foot) confirmed what the problem was and built me special insoles which sorted the problem. Cost me more than £200 -- and that was a few years ago -- but that's a small price for something so important.
Bottom line is a GP is in no way a sports injury specialist and will try to be helpful:
"it hurts when I descend 3000ft off a munro" ......... "stop decending 3000ft off munros"
Good advice but for most of us addicts at the chocolate teapot end of usefullness.
Added to this is a more general debate as to whether the NHS should fund us if our bodies don't like our hobbies (which however are likely to be very positive for our health but won't tick a GP's target list).
Don't have an answer. An appropriate question for your GP would be to ask what their action would be if you were a pro-athlete, almost inevitably if they're honest it would be to refer on (or to state that if you were a pro-athlete you wouldn't be asking your GP).
haha ive basically got exactly the same problem on my knee.
just like guy, im currently getting some insoles made for my shoes, and hopefully that will help ..... however the podiatrist told me this would only be 50% of the treatment, and that the rest would need to be physio exercises. she said that no matter how tedious they are, that you must do them.
the first time i had a "bad knee" i rested for a few weeks and that worked great. the next time i bust it, i still went on walks etc and trust me, i regret it now! my knee just didnt seem to get any better for weeks.
one more thing is: there are so many knee supports out there, that some may actually cause more damage than anything. i went into a marathon shop to ask for some knee support, and they refused selling me any unless i knew actually what/why i needed.
One thing that hasn't been mentioned is building up the muscles around your knee. I had a cruciate ligament reconstruction operation a few years ago and had to do these exercises afterwards.
Please be careful and if it doesn't feel comfortable, stop doing it!
Some of them were:
stand on the bottom step, take all your weight on your bad leg and lower your good leg as slowly as you can until it is on the floor at the bottom of the step. Do this facing up the stairs, down the stairs, sideways with, say 10 repetitions.
more fun and stupid if you've got a shiny floor: sit on a towel on the floor with your legs in front of you and bent so your soles are flat on the floor. Hold the towel in your hands, pulling it up between your legs like you're riding a horse (use your imagination). Then use your feet to drag yourself forward across the floor, sliding on your bum.
I used to use a neoprene support a fair bit, becuase I found it made a tangible difference, much more than tubigrips, and also it stays in pkace much better. Also found poles helped a lot.
However, in the longer term Stuart's suggested strategy of building the natural support has paid huge dividends for me, and I rarely wear a support and tend only to use poles on long days with steep descents and/or heavy loads. I got mine improved mostly by doing a lot more cycling, and spinning lower gears at higher cadences rather than pushing big gears hard.
I had the same problem a few years ago Damon and got the same from the GP.
About six months later my knee locked solid as I was standing up and I ended up in casualty. The doc took about 5 minutes to decide my cartilage had folded over, torn and was buggered and I ended up in surgery later the same day and had about two thirds of the cartilage removed.
I can walk OK now but cant really carry any weight so a big pack is now a no no.
My advice is keep pestering the GP or go private and get it operated on before its completely knackered like mine.
Good luck with it.
I dont know what youre weight is but if of the portly variety get some off,it helps alot.
I also have a selection of knee exercises which are tedious to do after awhile but help immensely.
More knee exercises!:
squats: stand with your feet shoulder width apart. Keeping your back straight and looking forward, bend your knees to about 90 degrees if you can. Try to keep your shins vertical and stick your bum out like you're sitting on a chair. Then straighten your legs back up again. Do this as slowly as you can.
lunges: same starting position. Take a big stride forward, hold your position and slowly lower the back leg so your knee almost touches the floor. Keeping the position, raise your back knee again and step back to the starting position. Keep your back straight and vertical throughout. Do a few like this and then swap legs.
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