Walking is just fine (in fact, he encourages it) but running is probably not a good idea. He took several x-rays and says that my knees look fairly normal for a woman my age, just minor signs of aging and wear that are well within what he would expect, especially given the surgeries I’ve had. Minor bone spurs on the tibia and irregularities on the back of the knee cap, and slight variance in the cartilage from one side to the other, but he sees no reason to get an MRI unless these flare ups continue to happen. After the usual poking, prodding, pulling, and twisting that goes with any orthopedic appointment, he doesn’t think there’s anything serious going on.
His main suggestion for why I’ve had more frequent flare ups lately is that perhaps all the walking is creating imbalanced muscle strength that pulls on my permanently-weakened knees. Combined with the impact of running, inflammation and pain is to be expected. So, he recommends Aleve for the next couple of weeks to reduce the swelling and a few visits with a physical therapist to evaluate my muscles and see what might need balancing out. Oh yeah, and no running. 🙂
It was a good visit, we chatted quite a bit about knees in general and the preventative surgeries I had back in high school; he is of the opinion that they were the best decision we could have made and that it undoubtedly added decades of life to my knees. Yay!
AND – he asked why I was doing so much walking, and when I told him his face just lit up; he has been on the medical board for the Susan G. Komen 3-Day and highly recommends it and the foundation in general! He was excited that I was participating and says he has thought about walking himself.