Wednesday, October 1

Getting old is hard to do Part II

Sometimes life can truly be funny and cruel. Just a few days after publishing my somewhat self-deprecating "Getting old is hard to do..." blog entry, which by the way was only meant to be funny, I was once again reminded -rather painfully yet again- that I am no longer a young indestructible man...

I felt something in my knee during the game that following Sunday. Something unfamiliar to me and my body. It was odd too because I don't remember doing anything to it. Stupid me i chalked it up to "getting old" even though I didn't feel particularly vigorous that day to begin with (or perhaps that is why i chalked it up to "getting old"). It wasn't pain I felt but more like a tenderness around the knee. Obviously I did not think it was an indication to what could be a deteriorating knee so I played on (despite its weakness). Never once during the game did it occur to me that I should probably sit down and give it a rest. "It ain't no thing" I kept convincing myself. I guess it is kind of like that like "check engine" light syndrome in your car. Sigh. Interestingly enough though, I still felt okay after the game. But that wasn't the case anymore later on that evening. It became as stiff as a tree trunk and a little swollen around the knee cap. I knew then I did something somewhat serious to my precious knee. But still, I can't seem to remember what I did to it...

The good news is that neither the X-RAY nor the MRI showed any broken bones or torn muscles and ligaments. The bad news is that they found all sorts of stuff wrong with it. First my "Medial Miniscus" is deteriorating due to overuse. "All of those years of playing basketball will do that to you" said my Dodger-Fan Doctor, solemnly (though he wouldn't buy my playoff tix for 500% face value lol...). Secondly I have water in my knee, common to osteoarthritis and torn MCL and or ACL. And lastly my knee is doing something weird. Something called "Patellofemoral Pain Syndrome". "Patellofemoral pain is a common knee problem. If you have this condition, you feel pain under and around your kneecap. The pain can get worse when you're active or when you sit for a long time. You can have the pain in only one knee, or you have have pain in both knees. The exact cause of Patellofemoral isn't known. It probably has something to do with the way your kneecap (called the "patella") moves on the groove of your thigh bone (called the "femur")". Basically your Patella is suppose to move sideways on the Femur. Mine doesn't seem to want to do that. Instead it is sliding upwards which is an un-natural movement for the kneecap. Not good... Or basically "my knee is messed up". A sentiment to which my Doctor wholeheartedly agreed with. Thanks Doc! If its any consolation, he quickly added "Michael Jordan had Patellofemoral Pain Syndrome". I wasn't quite sure whether he was being a smart-ass or just trivial, so I decided right then that it was a good time to ask him what I felt was an important question. "Doc man... can I still hump?". He said I would be fine without hesitation...

Anyway, this is what I have. It's too bad because both of my Sunday leagues have just started. Not that there is ever a good time to sustain an injury. As is, I will have to miss the rest of the Season if I want it to heal properly. To add insult to injury I also have a new Thursday League that I signed up for before getting injured. I guess I will just have to coach from the sidelines. They do recommend that I keep active by doing low-impact activity such as elliptical trainers, swimming, biking etc along with taking the proverbial anti-inflammatory my Doc prescribed... Although at the moment it is a bit too painful to even walk.

I am grateful and lucky that I hadn't torn any ligaments which would require surgery and obviously an even longer recovery period. When I broke my ankle several years ago, I wore a cast for Four long grueling months and then two seemingly even longer months to regain muscles lost. A half a year I was indisposed! This Patellofemoral Pain Syndrome would seem to be a much easier undertaking for me.


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