Pain in your knee? Get it checked out!

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As a regular squash player and 5K runner, it wasn’t unusual for me to have a few aches and pains after exercise. In fact, I considered any discomfort to be a badge of honour, as it meant that I had worked extra hard that day!

So when my left knee felt sore after a particularly energetic squash game, I didn’t think anything of it and assumed it would feel better after a day or two.

But when I woke up the next morning, I could hardly walk to work because my knee had become so swollen and completely stiffened up, so I decided to get it checked out by my doctor.

He told me that I probably had a torn meniscus in my knee. Apparently this is not an uncommon injury; it often affects athletes and sportspeople as well as older people as part of the ageing process.

My doctor explained that the menisci are like shock absorbers in my knee, but that they can get damaged and wear out over time. A torn meniscus often happens after forceful twisting injury to the knee, which is exactly the move I did during my last squash game.

He said that if I took a break from all the exercise and did some physical therapy, then my knee might heal itself but if this didn’t work, I would need surgery.

I didn’t like the idea of surgery and up to four months recovery time, so I have been following his advice and staying off my knee as much as possible. It definitely feels better and hopefully I will be back in the squash courts fairly soon.

My advice is for people to go and see their doctor if they think they have a similar problem. There’s not much you can do to avoid this type of injury, but it’s definitely worth getting it checked out as soon as possible.

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