I had PT today and we started iontopherosis. This is basically putting an ionized version of cortisone into my knee using a device similar to the electrostim device. I had thought my Dr. had said this would help with the scar tissues, but my PT said it is supposed to help with the swelling. I’m willing to try anything at this point!
As my patella tendon area has been sore the past few weeks, my PT 1st checked that out, and said it does appear to be “jumpers knee” or patella tendonitis, with the main sore part just where the tendon “inserts” into the patella on the medial side. I had started to doubt this as I thought it was the patella bone itself that was sore, but the PT found that it was where the patella connects to the bone, and that is still considered patella tendonitis. I still find it odd that this is a “new” pain 2 months post surgery that I don’t recall ever having before surgery. But then again I’m no longer sore where I used to be sore.
We put two pads on each side of the knee where the portals are, with one covering the jumpers knee area, and two lower on the leg. The lower ones are link electro sinks so the current flows from the top ones down. It did not feel at all like electrostim where this is enough current to make the muscles contract. Instead, at the very beginning, there was a very tinly tingling. Towards the end I did feel a very minor burning on my legs under the lower pads, and when we took of the top pads, my skin was quite red. (I’m glad I shave my legs or pulling the pads off would have hurt!)
I need to do this same procedures approximately every other day for the next week before we know if it will help me or not. There is some controversy in the field on whether the process works at all — the question is whether the ionization can disperse cortisone deep enough, I guess. My PT thinks my swelling is close enough to the skin that this may help.
I sure hope so, as ever since I did that 20 minute run and felt great, I’ve had to limit myself to no more than 5 – 10 minutes of running due to the patella tendon tenderness. I have been able to continue to bike on an indoor trainer up to 30 minutes and walk on a treadmill without causing any problems.
FYI, we did 7 of these treatments spread out over about 2 weeks. While the swelling did go down and the pain on the patella tendon got better, albeit very slowly, I’m not so sure how much this helped in the end.