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Thread: Knee pain - recently fused to sacrum

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Jan 2008
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    Utah
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    Knee pain - recently fused to sacrum

    Dear Scoli Friends ~

    In October I was fused from L3 through the sacrum. (Previously fused T4 - L3) I can feel that my walking style is different without the old pelvic motion and I am guessing that's the reason I'm experiencing some knee pain after being on my feet.

    Has that happened to any of you?

    If so, did it decrease with time?

    I appreciate hearing your experience!
    Ginger Woolley

    Oct 2018, L3 - S1, Anterior & Posterior, Dr Sigurd Berven, UCSF, San Francisco
    ******
    May 2008, T4 - L3, Dr. Ohenaba Boachie, Hospital for Special Surgery, NYC
    ******
    Sept 1967, T4 - T 11, without instrumentation, Dr Thomas Brown, Stanford

  2. #2
    Join Date
    May 2008
    Location
    reno,nevada
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    Yes and yes.

    It takes a long time for soft tissues to adapt....many months. New sneakers with foam inserts are heavenly, and use walking sticks or ski poles.

    Ed
    49 yr old male, now 62, the new 63...
    Pre surgery curves T70,L70
    ALIF/PSA T2-Pelvis 01/29/08, 01/31/08 7" pelvic anchors BMP
    Dr Brett Menmuir St Marys Hospital Reno,Nevada

    Bending and twisting pics after full fusion
    http://www.scoliosis.org/forum/showt...on.&highlight=

    My x-rays
    http://www.scoliosis.org/forum/attac...2&d=1228779214

    http://www.scoliosis.org/forum/attac...3&d=1228779258

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Feb 2016
    Posts
    19

    Some Suggestions

    Hi Ginger,

    Based upon my own experience and what I have read [including posts in this forum] I do think that fused spines put additional stress on joints both up AND down from the fused spine. That certainly includes the knees. I would second Ed's suggestions: get good running shoes [with a good heel cup & use a good insole]. One relatively inexpensive shoe that works for me is: Silver Combo Saucony Grid Stratos 5 Women's Running Shoes. Also , in this shoe I always place an insole recommended by my Sports Medicine Doctor: Green SuperFeet [https://www.amazon.com/Superfeet-GRE...dp/B0794GPRN8]. I find that I have to wear this type of shoe AND the insole if I don't want my knees to hurt. Occasionally if I need to wear dressier shoes I can only do for a short time period without paying a price with painful knees. To me this is good evidence that if I can stabilize my feet when I walk/hike, I can protect my knees.

    I typically have to replace my shoes at about 6 months [even though they look fine]. I've started recording the date when I start using a new pair of shoes so I don't have to find out they are worn out with knee pain. The Superfeet last a bit longer [maybe a year]. I hope this helps you, Terry
    1973 Diagnosed with scoliosis [left thoracic curve 75* and right lumbar curve of 72*]
    Spinal fusion surgery with Harrington Rod instrumentation
    Left thoracic curve corrected to 55* and right lumbar curve corrected to 45*
    2013 Significant pain down right, upper leg
    2015 MRI of lumbar spine detects "multilevel degenerative disc disease with disc bulges and facet hypertrophy" AND
    the presence of a "possible nerve sheath tumor" at L2-L3

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Jan 2008
    Location
    Utah
    Posts
    159
    I use Sketchers shoes. Some provide more shock absorbtion than others. I have tried various varieties at the Sketcher store and like the ones which are marshmellowy soft. When I get a pair which works well, I buy two or three pairs so I don't have to worry that they'll be discontinued.
    Ginger Woolley

    Oct 2018, L3 - S1, Anterior & Posterior, Dr Sigurd Berven, UCSF, San Francisco
    ******
    May 2008, T4 - L3, Dr. Ohenaba Boachie, Hospital for Special Surgery, NYC
    ******
    Sept 1967, T4 - T 11, without instrumentation, Dr Thomas Brown, Stanford

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Oct 2019
    Location
    Washington state
    Posts
    98
    I started experiencing knee pain in my right knee about 3-4 months after my most recent fusion (T10-S2) and I am now T2-S2. I would get a lot of pain with my knee in a 45degree angle especially while driving or while bent in any way while sitting say at home in a chair. We took some images and have found that my knee joint is sitting lopsided behind my knee cap. My PCP doesnít think this is due to my fusion but instead as an artifact of my body trying to compensate all these years for being crooked in my spine so my knee developed to be crooked. They suspect I have always had this knee pain and issue but the pain only became prominent recently because my more prominent pains (sciatica and back pain) subsided thanks to the fusion I had done 6 months ago. With some physical therapy and some stretching I am doing a lot better now but still tender from time to time. I guess there will always be some level of crookedness with me haha!
    Feb 2003 - Diagnosed C (35) T (45) L (25)
    Dec 2003 - T2-T12 Fusion correcting to C (8), T (14), L (20)
    Oct 2019 - Lumbar curve progressed to 40
    Nov 2019 - Thoracic curve progressed to 31
    June/July 2020 - T10-S1 Fusion with SI fixation

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Jan 2008
    Location
    NC
    Posts
    9,295
    Quote Originally Posted by JScoli91 View Post
    We took some images and have found that my knee joint is sitting lopsided behind my knee cap.
    Hi. I recently had a knee radiograph (small meniscus tear) and was told my knee cap was offset. That sounds like maybe the same thing you are talking about. They told me I was likely born that way but exercise could probably bring it to a more normal position. I think it may be due years of riding where I have my toes straight ahead (= correct position but very unnatural).

    I don't believe I had pain from the displaced knee cap per se and ascribe the meniscus tear to an injury several years ago on turf while working out. The tear was exquisitely painful but surgery to remove that ~10% of the membrane fixed that immediately.

    Good luck.
    Sharon, mother of identical twin girls with scoliosis

    No island of sanity.

    Question: What do you call alternative medicine that works?
    Answer: Medicine


    "We are all African."

  7. #7
    Join Date
    May 2008
    Location
    reno,nevada
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    Hi Jessica, Are you standing up straight? Your not pitched in any direction are you?

    If we are leaning, that will certainly screw up our gait and thus the knees get affected...If I have bear traps or any soft tissue injuries in the spine, I will lean, and my walking can really be hampered.... Usually, that walk is straight to bed.

    After all my years skiing, I am amazed I have not taken out my knees. That was a miracle....

    How about the spine? are you good? Any spine pain at 6 months?

    Merry Christmas everyone!

    Ed
    49 yr old male, now 62, the new 63...
    Pre surgery curves T70,L70
    ALIF/PSA T2-Pelvis 01/29/08, 01/31/08 7" pelvic anchors BMP
    Dr Brett Menmuir St Marys Hospital Reno,Nevada

    Bending and twisting pics after full fusion
    http://www.scoliosis.org/forum/showt...on.&highlight=

    My x-rays
    http://www.scoliosis.org/forum/attac...2&d=1228779214

    http://www.scoliosis.org/forum/attac...3&d=1228779258

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Oct 2019
    Location
    Washington state
    Posts
    98
    Quote Originally Posted by titaniumed View Post
    Hi Jessica, Are you standing up straight? Your not pitched in any direction are you?

    If we are leaning, that will certainly screw up our gait and thus the knees get affected...If I have bear traps or any soft tissue injuries in the spine, I will lean, and my walking can really be hampered.... Usually, that walk is straight to bed.

    After all my years skiing, I am amazed I have not taken out my knees. That was a miracle....

    How about the spine? are you good? Any spine pain at 6 months?

    Merry Christmas everyone!

    Ed
    Hi Ed, no spine pain and I’m 6 months out! My SI joints get a little pinchy at the end of the day if I have done too much that day but other than that I can’t complain. It definitely beats the neuropathy I was experiencing relentlessly before the fusion that’s for sure. However, my endometriosis is flaring up with a vengeance again and there is suspicion that I have endometriosis lesions on my sciatic nerve so we shall see what comes of that. It’s looking like if I don’t turn up pregnant I will be having a hysterectomy after a long battle since 15 with endometriosis. I am so thankful for our two beautiful little ones though so if we are done we are done and thats ok.

    I don’t notice myself pitching any direction when I stand or walk other than when I have been bent over a touch and the first few steps I take after being bent over sustained I am a little pitched forward but I think that’s more muscular than anything else. After a few steps I get back to being plumb straight! I even had a woman stop me in the grocery store thanking me for what she thought was my military service since I stood so straight and walked so tall. I was tempted to throw her a salute and a hoo-rah but I instead just showed her my scars and explained my situation haha!
    Last edited by JScoli91; 12-24-2020 at 09:39 PM.
    Feb 2003 - Diagnosed C (35) T (45) L (25)
    Dec 2003 - T2-T12 Fusion correcting to C (8), T (14), L (20)
    Oct 2019 - Lumbar curve progressed to 40
    Nov 2019 - Thoracic curve progressed to 31
    June/July 2020 - T10-S1 Fusion with SI fixation

  9. #9
    Join Date
    May 2008
    Location
    reno,nevada
    Posts
    4,344
    Excellent! I knew you were going to do fine....Kudos to your surgeon. What was his name again?

    Very nice job done on your XLIF's or LLIF's....that eliminates the large open incision from the front and the resulting scar tissue. I do not recall any of the ladies reporting endometriosis here.

    You should be due to go in soon for your 6 month visit and will probably get released.....

    How are you doing with shoe tying? Have you tried to get down there yet? It's a long reach....

    How would you compare both of your recoveries? Thoracic fusion at age 13 vs your Lumbar extension at age 30. This is a good question, so if you can be specific that would be great. I realize that they are almost 2 different animals, but just want to hear it from you....Meds, pain, recovery time, and anything you can contribute. I always wonder what the kids go through with standard thoracic scoliosis fusions.

    Ed
    49 yr old male, now 62, the new 63...
    Pre surgery curves T70,L70
    ALIF/PSA T2-Pelvis 01/29/08, 01/31/08 7" pelvic anchors BMP
    Dr Brett Menmuir St Marys Hospital Reno,Nevada

    Bending and twisting pics after full fusion
    http://www.scoliosis.org/forum/showt...on.&highlight=

    My x-rays
    http://www.scoliosis.org/forum/attac...2&d=1228779214

    http://www.scoliosis.org/forum/attac...3&d=1228779258

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Oct 2019
    Location
    Washington state
    Posts
    98
    Quote Originally Posted by titaniumed View Post
    Excellent! I knew you were going to do fine....Kudos to your surgeon. What was his name again?

    Very nice job done on your XLIF's or LLIF's....that eliminates the large open incision from the front and the resulting scar tissue. I do not recall any of the ladies reporting endometriosis here.

    You should be due to go in soon for your 6 month visit and will probably get released.....

    How are you doing with shoe tying? Have you tried to get down there yet? It's a long reach....

    How would you compare both of your recoveries? Thoracic fusion at age 13 vs your Lumbar extension at age 30. This is a good question, so if you can be specific that would be great. I realize that they are almost 2 different animals, but just want to hear it from you....Meds, pain, recovery time, and anything you can contribute. I always wonder what the kids go through with standard thoracic scoliosis fusions.

    Ed
    I see Dr. Janmeet Sahota with Tricity Orthopedics in Richland WA.

    I can get on the floor and play with my kids again, I can sit cross legged on the floor, with my legs out in front of me or sitting on my legs. I generally wear shoes that donít tie (barn boots, flip flops etc.) but when I do wear shoes that tie I have enough flexibility in my hips that I can bring my leg up on top of my other one and tie the shoe at an angle if that makes sense, hard to describe without a visual haha. When sitting in my recliner chair I can bring my feet up to meet me so I can trim my toenails etc. thanks to all that flexibility in my hips. Picking something up off the floor is a deep squat/dead lift but I can get down and do it.

    I feel like my recovery from this lumbar fusion was a little bit longer than when I had my thoracic done, but not by a whole lot. When I was 13 I was back going to classes in middle school or half days 3 weeks after surgery. I feel like after this lumbar fusion I didnít start feeling more like myself again until about 2 months out. However, a lot about life has changed between the two surgeries; Iím a wife, a mother, a farm manager, so I think I put a lot of mental pressure on myself that I didnít do when I was 13 for obvious reasons. I think also not knowing what I was getting into when I was 13 played a big part in it to. I feel like with this most recent fusion itís a completely different animal. There was a bit of flexibility and ROM that I lost obviously by my lumbar fusion but the trade off is SSSSSOOOOO worth it. I definitely have learned a lot about myself through all of this, and I will continue to as time goes on.
    Feb 2003 - Diagnosed C (35) T (45) L (25)
    Dec 2003 - T2-T12 Fusion correcting to C (8), T (14), L (20)
    Oct 2019 - Lumbar curve progressed to 40
    Nov 2019 - Thoracic curve progressed to 31
    June/July 2020 - T10-S1 Fusion with SI fixation

  11. #11
    Join Date
    May 2008
    Location
    reno,nevada
    Posts
    4,344
    It's nice to have an extremely positive post! and on Christmas day.....We all need to reflect and count our blessings.

    Full fusion and on the floor with the kids.... You do realize that this is almost impossible for me, or at least after the first 60 seconds, then I have to stand up.(Especially on Christmas morning) Crossing my legs for the shoe tie is impossible and trimming toenails is a tricky long stretch procedure. And I thought I was doing good..... I have lost all my bragging rights now! (smiley face)

    Unless Linda or Sharon has seen this, you do realize that you are probably the youngest full fusion pelvis patient posting here. A revision extension case to boot.

    Long term outlook for adolescents who have scoliosis surgery. (Peer reviewed)
    https://www.spine-health.com/conditi...liosis-surgery

    Things have changed for the better with scoliosis surgery over the years....since many of us don't have a choice, I figure I would point this out.

    Here is a musical perspective...Fixing a hole.
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vSOV...=elperrobeatle

    Ed
    49 yr old male, now 62, the new 63...
    Pre surgery curves T70,L70
    ALIF/PSA T2-Pelvis 01/29/08, 01/31/08 7" pelvic anchors BMP
    Dr Brett Menmuir St Marys Hospital Reno,Nevada

    Bending and twisting pics after full fusion
    http://www.scoliosis.org/forum/showt...on.&highlight=

    My x-rays
    http://www.scoliosis.org/forum/attac...2&d=1228779214

    http://www.scoliosis.org/forum/attac...3&d=1228779258

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