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Knee problems with no solutions...

Hello All. Noob here.

I've already posted this in the Newbie section, but after a bit more reading this is more like the right place. I am very keen on joining up when I finish university as an officer. I'm confident I understand the application process and the fitness and mental requirements this involves. However I have a problem with my knee.

Pre-university I was very fit and played rugby to a reasonable standard, until I injured my knee when I was hit from the side while my foot was static and dug in the mud. Heard a pop, swelled up and all the rest. Eventually recovered without any help, A&E advised rest, so I did and it seemed to heal up. I then suffered another injury, keeping me out for a while. Groin strain, which to those who know requires a lot of rest.

After seemingly recovering from these injuries I got involved with training for rugby and fitness over last summer, yet when I played a first training game my knee gave way without warning and couldn't bear weight.

Ever since then I've had near constant clicking in the joint, and occassional larger pops with significant pain and general discomfort. I've been through the NHS machine and am currently in my second term of physiotherapy which is making no difference.

I understand this isn't the place for diagnosis, X-rays, orthapedic surgeons and MRI scans have shown nothing. What I would like to know is:

Whether anyone has any advice as to how to go about helping this? Would a sports specific physiotherapist be a good idea?

Or is there any general advice people could offer?

I understand this is a very long post, but it's always been my aim to join up since school. I am very frustrated and very concerned that this could prevent acceptance and serving if not sorted. Also, I am concerned that if medical records are examined they will show up nearly two years of knee problems without a resolution. Would this go against me?

As an aside, I can squat and run, but painful pops come almost randomly and I can't pin point the cause.

Any information anyone could offer would be very gratefully received.




First person to have a similiar problem I used to have is you... I never injured myself though! ive never sprained or broke anything but before I went army training when I used to run my knee always clicked under my kneecap and used to hurt at all times, like a bruised bone, but after more fitness it just stopped doing it.... so maybe you just need to build it up more?? but I dont really know I am not a specialist in the subject


I would advise you go back to your GP and as for referral to an orthopaedic surgeon with an interest in knees. It sounds like you either have a ligament problem inside the knee itself (cruciate ligaments), or you may have a loose bit of cartilage floating around the joint. There are 2 options for further care: one is an MRI scan of the knee and the other is called an arthroscopy where, under general anaesthetic, a camera is put into the joint and damage can be assessed +/- repaired (depending on the nature of the damage). I normally recommend going straight to arthroscopy as it saves time: if the MRI scan is abnormal then most (but not all) go on to have a scope anyway so it saves time on the waiting lists.

Regarding medical suitability for service, it's a bit wooly I'm afraid. The letter of the law is that if you have had a cruciate ligament repaired then you are unfit for service, but most people get referred to a Service orthopaedic surgeon for advice. I'm not sure what the outcome is but it seems unfair to exclude people with a successful repair. If you need part of the cartilage in the knee removed then you need to be a year down the line and have no residual symptoms to be considered.

Hope this helps - if you need any more info then PM me.

Thank you for the reply, I really appreciate it.

I'll speak to the NHS physio I am being seen by at the moment, and ask to be referred back to the orthapedic surgeon again.



I have recently been seeing a doc about my knee. It sounds like you did the same kind of thing as me, although i was wakeboarding and my knee collapsed sideways when i landed. I saw an orthopedic and went under the knife back in April. Turned out i had damaged the ligament on the inside of my knee which had repaired itself, but badly, and had a loose ACL which he tightened up by removing some of it.
Now i have no pain or instability in my knee at all. I am seeing my surgeon on tuesday to be signed off his register then the Navy doc decides when i can pick up my aplication again. 6 months he said last time i saw him, and that was 2 months ago.


Jon - hope all goes well. As I said earlier, the guidelines state that repaired cruciates are a bar to entry, but in practice this is not the case. The guidelines at the end of the day are guidelines, and as medical officers we have the professional integrity to give clinical judgement. If your knee functions normally then I doubt if you will have any problems.

Good luck!
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