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Hi.

Last Friday I broke my patella (knee cap).I was slightly walking/running when I just tripped on the uneven pavement. I landed on my left knee. Today I got a message from the orthopedist that said I would need surgery. I want to avoid surgery just so I can be able to walk again quickly. If I do land up getting that, how long is the recovery time usually? Couple weeks....1 month? 

I am a runner.Have always been.Even just completed my first 1/2 marathon (13.10 miles) before this happened. Will I be able to run again like I did before?

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Hi Boo,

Sorry about the accident.

Recovery depends upon a number of things. How bad the damage is, what is needed to repair it, and how well you heal. It could be 8 weeks or so.

Will they be using hardware? That may complicate your recovery time.

I urge you to discuss these questions, and anything else you might have, with your surgeon/doctor. The knee is a complicated joint and takes enormous abuse. There will be PT after your surgery, follow it exactly as described. Make the most of your recovery.

Surgery can often be the fastest way to recovery in the case of a knee injury. Be careful putting any load on it while broken. You do not want to damage the cartilage.

Good luck. Keep us posted.
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Thank you medic-dan.



The orthopedist just said surgery would most likely be needed, but there are other options on the answer machine.Haven't had appointment yet. . Surprisingly there is no really serve pain. I'm just nervous of this whole thing. I'll definitely do physical therapy! I really want to be able to run again like I was before (5,6,7 miles every day). It's killing me not to run or exercise in general these days! ahhhhh.
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Glad to help.

Your orthopedist is the best resource for these questions. There are just too many variables to give you an accurate answer.

Keep us posted. Good luck and my best for a speedy recovery.
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I'm not a doctor but I would say listen to your doctor if you trust him. I didn't have surgery and it took 5 months in a cast and brace and now am going through physical therapy. It took 5 months because I didn't do what I was suppose to, not to mention he didn't tell me what NOT to do, so I did too much once the cast came off. I am reading of those who start walking and using there leg 2 weeks after surgery. it will take at least 6 weeks for your bone to heal if you don't have surgery. I'm assuming he wants to do surgery because it's displaced.? That's the only reason I know of that they would want to do surgery, the bones aren't close enough to find each other to heal back together. Get a second opinion if you want, but don't play around here, it takes forever to get back. By the way, I was training for my second marathon. So that's why I'm saying do what they tell you and if they don't tell you enough, ask. I didn't and it cost me.
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I just broke mine in 2 (horizontally across the middle), and the bottom piece was also broken.  I've got 2 vertical wires that they drilled and inserted to pull it all together and 2 other wires going around the outside pulling it together tight.  Your point of "having no severe pain" makes me wonder.  I broke mine a month ago, had surgery, and I'm still in a good bit of pain.  Walking sucks - pure and simple.  As a fellow runner - this sucks, and I don't see a bright light at the end of the tunnel.

MAJ AARON

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