Question - Plica Syndrome

Three years ago I hyperextended my knee. I was a competitive gymnast and played soccer for my school, but have had to stop both because of my knee. Because I was in the middle of both seasons, I did not take any time off.

A year later when my knee was still hurting, I was told that I had plica syndrome and it would stop hurting with some pt. A year after that, the pt still had not done anything to help so I had arthroscopic surgery to remove the plica.

It has been a year since the surgery and my knee still hurts. It hurts to run or do any type of exercise, to walk down stairs, when I sit for long periods of time, and sometimes even to just walk.

I went back to the surgeon and he said there was nothing else he could do to help me. I talked to a family friend who is an orthopedist and she recommended a brace, which I have been wearing now when I exercise for three months, but nothing is helping.

Do I have any other options or do I just live with the pain?

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Dec 10, 2008
by: Bart - SII

Did your rehab include any activities that worked specifically on your hip mobility and strength? Many times even once the plica is removed, the abnormal stresses that were causing the plica irritation are still there, so now they are irritating the other soft tissues of the knee - a form of patella femoral syndrome.

If your rehab didn't do any exercises specific to the hips, then that may be a missing key to your recovery. And not all hip strengthening is created equal. Weight bearing activities that engage both the core and the hips at the same time to control the movement of the femur (internal rotation and adduction) are key. The patella is helpless in determining the stresses placed on it, and the soft tissues that surround it. If the hip muscles are not working to control the movement of the knee in space, then abnormal stresses are created, and the weakest link (in this case the plica) gets irritated.

Other things to consider are the biomechanics of your feet, and mobility and flexibility (although I doubt flexibility is a problem given your gymnastics past)

There are some example hip exercises on the site under the rehab section that may help.


Dec 10, 2008
by: Anonymous

The therapy was completely focused on core, hip and leg strengthening.

Dec 18, 2008
good luck with Pt
by: Anonymous

My daughter had her Plica removed 10/21/08, and she has done PT 3x a week since. She has been able to go back to karate, but her spring soccer is a question. What we found is to do slow stretches several times a day, plus the PT exercises. We have been using ice, but have stopped that in the last week. I do wonder and you may know....but since she has the plice issue in the left knee, what are the chances she starts haveing a problem in the right? Its starting to hurt, so I am hoping thats not the problem. Best wishes....

Dec 31, 2008
plica surgery
by: mike

I too had my plica removed. The surgery report also says "did further synovectomy" twice after removing plica and checking the everything else (meniscus, ligaments- which all were fine). I'm 7 wks. post surgery and still limp because. I thought a scope was going to be simple because I had no tears and the cartilage was fine, but this is turning into a nightmare. They never gave me info that I could be off work months and months. I wouldn't have done it. Now I'm wondering if my knee will ever be even as good as it was before the surgery. Maybe it's just takes months to heal all the synovial tissue he excised.

Dec 31, 2008
by: Anonymous

I know exactly what you mean. It has been a year sicne I had arthroscopic surgery to remove plica in my knee and I still cannot do most of the things I could before the surgery. The doctor said that the surgery would take me back to 100% and I still cannot run or play sports without my knee hurting. Does anyone know of any other treatments for plica, post-surgery?

Mar 12, 2009
same problem

im going back this week to another ortho dr for a second opion. i had surgery on my plica about 2 and a half years ago did therapy after and all and within id say the past year are having problems with the knee again pain a creeking sound in the knee numbness on the outerside of the knee. im in the same boat any strenuous activity kills the knee yet my dr said id be better then befor when he did the surgery..

Mar 13, 2009
by: Anonymous

Sorry to hear everyone is still having pain. My daughter surgery was 10/21/08 and she has been able to basically go back to regular schedule. Running causes a little stiffness, but no pain. But now her right knee is doing the same thing as the left. We are considering surgery.

May 02, 2009
same problem
by: pain still


May 24, 2009
Had the surgery

I had the surgery in September of 04 and my knee is still not the same. I have constant problems with inflammation... I went back to the ortho that did the surgery and there really is nothing that can be done. I just ice and use Ibprofin and rest my knee when needed. Glad to know that I am n ot the only one with this problem

May 26, 2009
7 years and counting
by: Anonymous

My daughter was injured at work in 2001 with a blow to her right knee which set off the plica pain - misdiagnosed as patellar tendonitis for over 4 years. After a year and a half the left knee also became inflamed which further baffled the doctors. Several doctors (she went to 7) could see nothing on the x-rays or the 2 MRIs that were taken. After 2 doctors said the pain was in her head I took her to Marshfield Diagnostic Clinic in Marshfield, WI where they finally did athroscoptic surgery found the plica and removed it. A month later she had the left knee done. That was in 2004. She still has substancial knee pain and is on many pain medications. She has been "kicked out of physical therapy 3 times because they tell her she needs to get the pain in control before they can work with her which makes no sense to me. I know hers is a rare case but it's nice to know she really isn't crazy...that others have substancial pain after the removal of the plica. Thanks for listening.

May 28, 2009
Knee Pain after Plica Removal
by: Anonymous

I had plica removal done 8 years ago after a blow to the knee. I have had pain on and off since, but nothing that I couldn't live with until recently when I strained my leg running with my dog. The pain was like dejavu. My doc gave me a cotisone shot yesterday which did alleviate the pain in my knee and improve my range of motion. I am scheduled for an MRI. The doc says that the plica tissue does not regenrate so it seems so weird that we all the same complaint.
Also, in the past 3 years my knee has popped out of the socket 2 times. Excruciating!! My knee always feels like it is on the verge of doing that latley. Curious to see what the find in MRI.

Jun 05, 2009
by: Anonymous

i am scheduled to have a arthoscope go in my knee and look around to see if their is anything they can do! I've do pt for 2 years and nothing has healped! i have excrutiating pain at times when i cant walk, climb stairs, or sit for long periods of times. the surgeon said he mite do a lateral release but if that doesnt help it, then i have to go to a therepist. To learn how to "DEAL" with the pain. there is no way on this earth that i am going to deal with all this pain!!!! hope everything works out with u!! :/

Jun 22, 2009
by: CJA

I had Plica removed 18 days ago by Dr. Zelicof in New Rochelle, NY. I guess I am one of the fortunate few as I was back to work in 4 days. The pain I had prior to the surgery has gone. The only pain I have left is more of a stiffness or soreness from the actual procedure. The knee that was scoped is now my good knee.

Jul 13, 2009
plica recovery
by: Deborah

Thank You every one for the above comments. I had knee surgery on my right knee 6 weeks ago. I was told Plica was removed and the back of my knee cap smoothed. I am still in pain - sometimes a dull throb and other times a sharp intense pain. I saw the consultant after 4 weeks who told me my knee was still inflamed and wait. I was told to stay off work 2 weeks (my work told me I should not have even been signed off for an Anthroscopy) and it is now six weeks and the pain is the same as it was at the two week stage. I have felt really down by the pain and also silly and weak to not have recovered so thank you every one who has typed above. I now know I am not alone. Did anyone have the same pain they had before? I still have clicks in my knee and clicking to the right of my shin bone below my knee which causes more pain than my knee (this was the original pain the surgery was for) I am told my cartilege and ligaments are in good shape

Jul 13, 2009
7 Years and Counting
by: Anonymous

I'm sorry to hear about your tough situation. And in answer to your question... Yes, I too have cracking and clicking in my knees. So, you are not alone in that respect. I am going down to San Antonio, TX in August. I live in WI now and I know that warmer weather and drier makes my knees feel much better. Why? I have no idea but it does. So, in all probability I'll be making a permanent move down there. I'll let everyone know if it helps! And I hope you find some relief in the meantime. If you're near an Advanced Pain Management... alls I can say is my Dr. there is terific. And I've been to MANY pain management Dr.'s until I found him.

Aug 09, 2009
still hurting
by: Anonymous

i think it is ridiculous that so many people are having the same problem. obviously the surgery does not work but they still recommend and perform it on many people for many different injuries.

i had the surgery almost three years ago after two years of physical therapy. since the surgery, the ortho said there was nothing more he could do so i got a second opinion from a womens hip and knee specialist. she sent me for more pt and massage therapy, which did help some.

i am now continuing with physical therapy, massage therapy, seeing a chiropractor, and just got a steroid shot, but its still not getting any better.

my knee is worse than before the surgery and i am really regretting ever having it. i have lost my range of motion and a great deal of strength, and as a college athlete this is really a problem for me. i do not have time or the patience for this anymore and am just looking for something to stop the pain!

if so many people have this problem, how can doctors not know how to fix it?

Aug 10, 2009
re- still hurting
by: deborah

I agree - it obviously doesn't work and I am regretting having the surgery. I have been for physiotherapy now and was told my knee is still inflamed with fluid above it almost ten weeks since surgery. They also believe the fibres that hold the shin muscle to the shin bone have come away from the bone. I have to ice my knee three times a day and ride a bike to build muscle, this causes me the same pain I had before surgery. I did not know I was going to have plica removed and had I known I would have researched it and not had it done.

Aug 17, 2009
my story
by: Anonymous

I have my plica removed 10 weeks ago, only to develop a DVT (blood clot) in my calf. I feel like the doctors are lying to me...I hurt my knee at work, got a cortisone shot, but it only worked for a couple of days.I limped on it for 3 mos. before they finally did the surgery. PT seems to help for a day or two, but when i go 3 or 4 days between appts. it hurts as much as before the surgery...starting to wish i never had this done.
My mom told me that before a surgery like this the doctor is supposed to test your blood for stuff like that, so they can decide if you need to take blood thinner before the my question to those of you that would know would be IS THAT TRUE?

Aug 17, 2009
7 years and counting
by: Anonymous

I found this on one web site:
Causes of DVT
You are more likely to get a DVT if you:
1. are over 40
2. are immobile, for example, if you have had an operation (especially on a hip or knee) or are travelling for long distances - and so are not able to move your legs
3. have had a blood clot in a vein before
4. have a family history of blood clots in veins
5. have a condition causing your blood to clot more easily (this is called thrombophilia)
6. are very overweight (obese)
7. have cancer or have had cancer treatment
8. have heart disease or circulation problems
9. are a woman taking a contraception pill that contains oestrogen, or hormone replacement therapy (HRT)
10. are pregnant or have recently had a baby

If you're having surgery
Surgery and some medical treatments can increase your risk of developing DVT. So, if you're going to hospital for an operation, you will usually have an assessment to check your risk of developing DVT before you have your operation. There are many things that can be done to keep your risk of developing DVT during surgery as low as possible. You may be given anticoagulant medicines before and after surgery, or be asked to wear compression stockings. You may also be given a mechanical pump to use on your feet and legs in the first few days after the operation. This is called an intermittent compression device. The pump automatically squeezes your feet and lower legs to help your blood circulate.
Hope this helped.

Aug 17, 2009
complications with plica excision/debridement
by: Anonymous

I injured my right knee at work 6 mos. ago, doctors tried cortisone to no avail, then sent me for mri, which they said was negative, but had a lot of swelling and pain. Had plica removed and patella and meniscus derbridement 10 weeks ago. The day after surgery, started experiencing extreme pain in calf of same leg...turned out to be DVT (blood clot). I'm doing pt 2x week ever since, some improvement but ROM is still terrible(maybe 95'?) and between therapy appts. pain seems just as bad as before surgery. I thought the pain would be improving much more by I being unrealistic?Also, I've been told by my cousin (she's a nurse pract.) that prior to surgey, it's common practice to test the patient's blood for clotting risks, h. pylori, etc...anyone know anything about all of this?

Aug 18, 2009
my story
by: Anonymous

sorry about the double post, for some reason page didnt update. Thanks for the reply, they did have me wear compression sock, but i dont have any of the risk factors...male under 30 with athletic build. Started coumadin and naproxen(as directed by Dr.) three days post op. About 3weeks later I developed intense stomach pain and was diagnosed with "probable" that point I was tested for h. pylori, and a week later was told that was the cause of the bleeding, not the coumadin and naproxen. Thought that was odd seeing as how I've never had any stomach problems prior to the meds.Ive never heard of anyone my age and in my shape going through this, and I guess it doesnt help me that my mom worries about me endlessly, and we have a LPN in the family. Went to PT yesterday and experienced pain on the outside of knee almost as much as medial...weird...feels ok right now though, hope it lasts.

Aug 21, 2009
plica syndrome
by: Anonymous

I sympathize with everyone. As I just found out today that is my problem. Started hurting mid-June & thought I had torn my meniscus. Had the MRI, no tears, was told it was arthritis. Had the knee aspirated of fluid and given a cortisone injection. Felt ok went back to my tennis and other activities. After tennis it would puff up nice & big & then I would be in agony for at least 48hrs. All this time doing PT, felt fine after PT but anytime I would do any activity I'd be back at square 1. Extremely frustrating! Just had a 2nd opinion today. This Dr. says surgery is a 50/50 chance of 'curing' it and like some people have mentioned could have more problems after. He's taking the non-surgical route. I'm to do no running , tennis or hard pounding for 4 weeks. He gave me another cortisone injection. Can only walk on level surfaces, difficult for me as I live in the foothills of Denver. I can also do the elliptical and ride a bike on the flats with minimal resistance. This is torture for me but figure I will abide by this as I want to get back to my normal active life. And I'm hoping that this hasn't turned into something chronic.
I was surprised to see how many people suffer from this and that I'm not imagining the pain that goes along with this syndrome.

Aug 27, 2009
Good Plica Outcome
by: Anonymous

I had a medial plica resection/chondroplasty on 8/4/09 with great results. I was able to perform quad sets the day after surgery without pain for the first time in six months. I was back to work the day after surgery (granted I work in physical therapy so that has helped.) I also feel fortunate to have found an orthopedic surgeon with a ton of experience in performing these procedures on runners. I have been very happy with my surgery and wanted to let you know that the outcome is not always bad with this type of surgery. For those that have had a difficult recovery, I'm truly sorry-it's so frustrating to not be able to do what you love!

Aug 27, 2009
7 Years and counting
by: Anonymous

It's about time someone found releif!! I hope things continue to go well with you. Soon all the suffering and pain we go through will be a thing of the past, no not in heaven but right here on earth. For all who need comfort in dealing with this chronic health issue please read Revelation 21:3,4. And Ps. 37:9-11 and 29.
This comfort has helped me deal with the pain I go through right now...It gives me hope that God cares and will soon do something about the problems we all face. If anyone would like some more comfort from the scriptures please feel free to e-mail me at
But unfortunately until this time comes we must deal with the reality of it all. Again I'm glad someone found releif!!

Sep 07, 2009
update on my surgery
by: Deborah

Hello all. I am now 14 weeks post op and am in more pain than before the op. Before I had episodes of no pain. I had pain whenever my leg and knee 'clicked' which would fade over a period of hours. Now I have pain all the time and have to use a stick if I am walking far ( I am 36). This is because it feels like a knife has been pushed into the inner side of my knee when I put weight on it.PT consists of being told exercises to do.One Therapist has never ever touched my knee. I saw the consultant last week who said my knee was fine - he doesn't understand why I still have pain but I will feel the benefit from the surgery in approx a YEAR!!!!
They have also diagnosed the clicking followed by pain( which I still get) is a torn shin muscle which has come away shin bone!) I hope others are fairing better than me but if you are not my update is to show you are not alone

Sep 07, 2009
striking similarities...
by: Anonymous

in response to the woman 14 weeks post op, i am now 12 weeks post op and i know exactly what you are going through. about a month ago my therapist told me that i should be almost back to normal by now(a month ago)...seemed like he was doubting my pain. fastfoward about two weeks, while at therapy he was moving my patella around to help break down scar tissue(i guess?) and he notice how it feels like my knee is moving over a cheese grater...and thats normal...really? another therapist was doing the same thing and noticed the same thing and also how swollen my knee still is. i was told it might take 6 months or more to feel normal again. i'm wondering if its ever going to feel the same again...and if theres something else wrong. another question. how many different types of mri are there? im wondering if theres something else going on, but they didnt see it because of an inferior image...i have no idea if there is something better than those mris than produce black and white images, i just know insurance companies are cheap and will take advantage of anybody. hope everyone feels better!

Sep 10, 2009
not crazy
by: Anonymous

I had surgery 7/2/09, after pt and no problems on any imaging i opted for the arthoscopic (i had medial meniscus removed with lateral release 14 years ago in high school) again. Found the plica torn, cartilage all frayed and a small tear in the lateral meniscus. Went to the dr a week after the surgery and told him i was in agony, he told me to start pt asap. 4 weeks later still in pain but forced myself to walk with no crutches as he recommended. the therapist was amazed at how stong i was and had me continue on my own. everyday in pain and having to ice. back to work after 8 weeks, having to ice as soon as i got home every day. its not about 9 weeks out and its the same thing. every day i'm in pain from when i wake up. walking, i just dont want to do. The dr told me i'd be 100% and never look back. I'm 31 and the fact that i can sometimes not walk without pain is frustrating. its sad to see so many similar stories in comparison to the few successes. at least i know im not crazy like the dr seems to think.

Sep 10, 2009
re not crazy
by: Deborah

I know exactly how you feel - I feel the same -I am sure the doctors think I am crazy because they can bend my knee around and ask me to push it and it is strong. It only hurts when I get to the carpark when I have walked (weight bearing), then it is agony and will throb for hours. I have found it is easier to cycle (after initial pain for the first few metres) than it is to walk. Phyio tomorrow - last time the therapist didn't even touch my knee- showed me exercises that I can't do!

Sep 24, 2009
re:not crazy
by: Anonymous

thanks deborah!
yeah i have strength but forget it, 10 minutes into walking it's hurting and i can't kneel on it, its still very sore around the incisions. everyone thinks i'm being a baby b/c i'm almost 12 weeks out but rainy days like today i'm getting shooting pains/throbbing.

Oct 05, 2009
Can I expect my Plica syndrome to go away after 4 months?
by: Anonymous

Hi, I've been diagnosed with Plica syndrome after negative MRIs and don't think I will ever have surgery. Mine has gone on for 4 months, but got a lot better after 3, then worse again after some mild bumps to the knee and too much walking one day. It started all because a massage therapist simply moved my patella up and down in it's groove, I was having hip problems prior to that but really wish he would not have messed with my knee. I wonder if just that could have tore the plica or just aggravated it. It doesn't really hurt at rest, but I have really decreased my normal walking and I have physical therapy exercises. I'm not even exercising but I am a small person,110 pound,5 ft 4". I ballet danced last year and that is wear the hip problems began. I have used creams, NSAIDs, braces and orthotics and they do help. Should I expect it to get better? Any advice would help.

Thanks, Debra

Oct 11, 2009
by: Anonymous

I am a 17 year old female and have been suffering from knee pain for almost 5 years and have endured numerous injuries to my knees. I play lacrosse and snowboard nonstop. I was recently diagnosed with plica syndrome and my doctor wants to give me a cortisone shot as a diagnostic as to whether or not it truly is my plica because if it is then he wants to recess it through arthroscopic surgery. After reading so many numerous negative reports of plica removal surgery I am starting to grow very weary and unsure of what to do. Any suggestions?

Oct 12, 2009
by: deborah

Hello both of you - it is sad to see so many negatives for plica surgery. I am still in pain four months after surgery but have been told it takes up to a year to feel benefit! Perhaps I am being impatient but really did expect a difference sooner.
The problem is that you never know how you are going to recover from surgery - I am a bad example , but know a friend who had plica, debridement and ligaments and was back at work in two weeks and continuing with sports. My friend is sporty and I think if your leg muscles are strong you are in better shape to recover as your muscles support the knee more. I have never been particularly fit and so my leg muscles were not strong. Hope this helps

Oct 13, 2009
muscle strength
by: Anonymous

i don't particulalry believe in plica syndrome the muscle strength is a hugr factor in recovery. I'm a personal trainer and was in top shape before my surgery and i'm stil having just as many issues and as much pain as people who are not in top physical condition. i think this is one of those things where 15-20 years from now they will realize that maybe the current approach was not the smartest choice. i've seen this happen in many cases involving knee procedures

Oct 13, 2009
by: Anonymous

DON"T DO THE CORTISONE SHOT!!!! It will stop the pain for maybe a month or two, but you have to continue getting them if you want the relief to continue and it wears away the cartilage which will cause bigger problems in the future. Its just not worth it.

I would also be wary of the surgery, I had it when I was 18 (im 21 now) and my knee is no better. The only thing I have found that works is Kinesiotape. The stuff is pretty expensive, but I ran a mile without my knee hurting last week for the first time since my surgery. Go online, buy a roll, learn to tape yourself, and see if it works. Its a whole lot cheaper than the surgery and for me has been 100% more effective.

Oct 14, 2009
Sleepless Nights after Plica removal
by: Dana

Hi All,

I am 7 weeks out from surgery. I had the plica removal and I still have severe pain. I saw my OS 2 days ago and he said its "only a bone contusion" and gave me a steroid injection. When I went to check out I was informed that he has released me, and wrote a script for 4 more weeks of PT???? I still have poor range of motion and no one can guarantee that it will get back to normal. After the injsction I still have the terrible bone aches especially while sleeping. Can anyone offer help??

Nov 19, 2009
by: Anonymous

hi i had plica removed in march no i can admit i do not have the pinching feeling all the time thank God but after the surgery and before also the knee will swell get warm and give out more so since the surgery i have had more xrays and etc i go to the dr and he says to stretch i do. i seems like it is worse now like i get stuck when i try to kneel,steps are my worse enemy to this day i will be fine then bam there goes the knee. i feels like someone comes up and just all the sudden kicks me. Also i have alot or problems when i sleep i wake up with leg pain its a sharp shooting pain and its not the same as when your leg for say falls asleep, when this happens the pain last for hours, also the colder the weather the more problems i have. Does anyone have any sugestions? Does the pain and problems ever go away?

Nov 20, 2009
my recovery (finally)
by: Deborah

As you all know I had surgery in June this year. I am now in hardly any pain - it turned out I had a trapped nerve in the bottom of my spine which was causing all the pain in my knee and leg. This is really annoying as did I really have plica syndrome anyway? Who knows. I have recently been able to take my dog for proper long walks and only get the occassional twing in my knee, but I expect that as I had surgery. It is so much better. I was amazed I had a trapped nerve as I never had any back pain! I am still waiting for a second opinion on my shin, as a doctor told my the clicking I get is bones rubbing together but my knee pain has almost gone.I hope everyone recovers soon. It takes a while but I feel I am almost there

Dec 04, 2009
do i need another knee surgery?
by: stormchaser

I have had plica suergery in May 2008 and I believe the plica has grown back and thick. My pain, snapping, and tender on my femur next to patella just as bad as before. I am focused on my wrist and hand i have carpal tunnel in right wrist which it probably requires surgery. I am janitor for a school district and go to college. I do a lot of walking and using my hands in day. I am only 24 years old. think about that. Do you think i should have surgery on the knee again in the future?

Jan 18, 2010
questions for you
by: Anonymous

sorry to hear about everyone's troubles with this.

if anyone has tried squatting (not 90 degrees, but all the way down into a FULL SQUAT), did the medial aspect of the knee right next to the patella hurt on the way up? It feels like there is so much stress there.

what other pains was everyone experiencing before their surgeries? and if you already answered this in your comments, I apologize for sounding repetitive!

Thank you

Jan 18, 2010
In response to the squatting...
by: Anonymous

I do squatting in PT and my knee bothers me as well. Step ups are the worst though, my knee feels as though it's in a bind kinda like when you try to pop your knuckle and it absorbs the pressure but will not pop. I have pain in different areas of my knee, don't really know what I do to provoke it but it doesn't take much. I'm 7 months post surgery and still can't get down on my knee due to pain, ROM is around 110...that's it, 110. Not a single day has gone by that I don't regret having it done, and now my other knee is having the same symptoms. I'm far worse off now than before, never gonna do tha again if I can help it. Pretty sure the "doctor" botched the procedure, but he thinks me and my popping, clicking, swollen knee are full of you-know-what. Best of luck to all of you...

Jan 19, 2010
by: Anonymous

Hey Everyone,
I've been dealing with the same type of pain from plica you've all had and discribed. My plica was set off by a work injury in 2001 I've had it removed in 2004 when it was finally diagnosed. According to my doctor it can't grow back. And I still have so much pain I'm on disability and not able to work or do any type of activity. I've done 4 boughts of PT but they kick me out and say come back when the pain is better under control. But recently my pain management doctor has been trying injections of Synvisk (sp?) and wow have I noticed a huge difference in my pain level.I went from daily pain levels of 8's and 10's to 6's. Has anyone else tried this medication? Are you having the same results? I'm only on my 2nd injection of 4 and the improvement is blowing me away! Maybe something to think about/try?.

Feb 21, 2010
plica syndrome
by: stormchaser

i am still experiencing pain in the pain and i have to the dr appt with the past plica surgery history. i probably may need the knee fixed yet again. the wirst pain had cleared up.

Apr 05, 2010
Wish I had known
by: Use to be active

I am 6 months post-plica removal. What did I do? I am no better off now, than before the surgery. I wish I had found this site before I had it done. I looked and couldn't find much of anything on the recovery of this type of surgery. The surgeon told me it was a simple procedure but gave me no information on my recovery. PT was started 3 days afterwards and was very painful and had to be stopped after 2 weeks. I can not do stairs without pain and/or popping, I can not use my elliptical or ride my bike. I have not been able to do any weight training if it involves my legs. Most days my knee doesn't feel like it's mine. It's stiff, painful, burning at removal site. I can not squat down without horrible pain. I have gained 7 lbs since my surgery and am beginning to get depressed about my recovery. Why is this surgery still being performed if there is no benefit?

Apr 05, 2010
know how you feel
by: Anonymous

I know the feeling. It's been a year since I had my plica removed, and after that, cortisone injections, and 8 months of PT, I'm still at home doing nothing...and my knee still hurts! It's definitely worse than before the surgery. And now, because my ROM never recovered completely (only 110-115)I have several permanent limitations. Had to give up my job due to limitations, now I don't know what I'm going to do. I'm beginning to think that the plica may cause other unseen damage/issues that the doctors /insurance companies don't care to research. There in lies the problem with modern medicine, as all of you have witnessed: modern medicine is a's more profitable to treat symptoms than it is to find the problem and heal it. For example, I got to the Dr. b/c of knee pain. They do one test, a grainy, low-resolution MRI, see some rough edges on the meniscus, and decide "well, it's not that, must be the plica", go in, and debride most of the cartilage in my knee, and tell me that my femoral chondyle is messed up, which was probably the problem to start with. Why didnt they see that before they cut me? I think they did, but they went with protocol, not good judgement. So to you who have gone through this, i feel your pain. To those of you thinking about having this done, PLEASE, careful. TRUST YOUR OWN JUDGEMENT before you let a doctor, who doesn't have to live with the pain, decide for you.

Apr 05, 2010
Your Daughter's Other Knee
by: Autumn

I had Plica that was misdiagnosed as tendonitis for 4 years. It originally started with an injury to my right knee at work. A year and a half later my left knee started acting up because of relying on it so much. Now 9 years later the left knee is almost as bad as the right which had the original injury. I don't know if this is typical for others but... I hope your daughter doesn't have to live with 2 bad knees. Hopefully you'll have caught it soon enough to stop it from being too bad. Also, I wanted to update everyone. I moved down to Texas from Wisconsin in Oct. hoping the warmer weather would make a difference. HUGE difference. I'm doing better than I have in years! I also started getting injections of Synvisk (sp?). That also made a huge difference in my pain level. I would highly recommend it... If you can get past the 3 inch needle going into your knee : ) But still worth it!

May 05, 2010
Ignore the pain
by: Anonymous

I had plica surgery about 6 weeks ago. Surgery on Wednesday. Went back to work/gym Monday. Very limited in what I could do in gym, but doc told me to have at within limits of pain. I have a pretty high pain tolerance, told him that, and he still said have at. Back to Muay Thai 10 days after surgery (doc said 4 weeks, I protested, he said 2 weeks maybe, so 10 days seemed to work). My observations:

- Every time I push through the pain and re-establish that particular function, my overall pain level drops significantly. Grind though it, this isn't a structural problem, it a mind over matter problem. For example, was still having issues climbing stairs. Went for long hike with lots of elevation this weekend. Lovely view. Miserable pain. Now going up stairs is easy.

- Stay on top of anti-inflammatory meds. When my knee feels good, I forget, then I regret. Take as scheduled, not based on pain.

- Ice is your new best friend. Awesome. Lots of it.

- Best time ever to improve your blocks for kicks. Total motivation, as I'll get kicked in my still bruised knee if I don't move fast enough / high enough. My blocks are getting really quite good! But I don't actually recommend this as a training protocol. It really sucks.

- My quads have been / are still slightly a train wreck. They just weren't firing properly. The only way to get them going again was to work it. A lot. Still some funky gaps in what works and what doesn't, but it's just been six weeks.

- Don't jump. No, really, that seems obvious, but I'm kind of thick skulled. Everything else seems to help. Jumping leaves me a mess. So I do squats vs. jumping jacks. Bounce on a tire or walking knees vs. jump rope. That is the only thing I've had to completely rule out.

- Allow extra recovery. Normally I can have at 5-6 days a week and recover well. I can go 3-4, but having 3 days off seems to settle the inflammation (though I'm still walking / hiking on my off days)

Bottom line is, barring other problems, a process of sucking it up and having at (except for jumping). I really think recovery from plica is plowing through the pain. Just remember, the problem isn't structural. It's relearning. Per my physical therapist, as long as I can sleep at night after a good icing, I'm OK, keep pushing.

Very glad I pushed through. Can definitely see a full recovery coming soon and the glorious joy of workout w/o the pain I've been dealing with for 18 months! Wish I'd had it done sooner, glad I did it now, and very glad I'm pushing the recovery hard.

Jun 09, 2010
by: Beth

I was just told i needed surgery will they put me in a brace? I was hoping to be able to go back to sports in a week or so? Will that happen??

Jun 10, 2010
by: Anonymous

By the looks of the other comments and my daughters experience it seems as though it depends on how soon after injury the condition was diagnoses. Best wishes to you!

Jun 16, 2010
any body help?
by: sad:(

I have been in pain for 5 months first started off with a slite pain on my medial side of my a mri doc told me it was a slight degeneration in my medial meniscus. said it would be only a month recovery. that was 4 months ago.I have been going to pt but havent been continually doing excersizes due to pain.i was always extremly active and muscular.In the last 2 months I went to an (op) and he told me I have plica syndrome. but my pt told me if I had plica i would be in such pain in certain spot when he touches and moves my knee at the same time. Do i have plica syndrome?I have lost all my muscle in my legs sitting around waiting for the pain to go away.Im wondering if thats why my knees r in so much pain.the routiene goes like this 2 days very little pain then I want to excersize to build muscle then the next 3 to 4 day lots of throbing pain all over the knee not only the medial side.what do you guys think?

Jun 17, 2010
In response to your question about plica
by: Reflux

You could have plica syndrome, although from my experience I'm pretty sure they use plica syndrome as a scapegoat for not being able to definitively tell you what's wrong. It's sounds like you may have chrondromalacia, more or less it's similar to arthritis. Since I've had my plica removed (1 year ago), I've been in more pain than before and I'm experiencing more patellar tracking issues and WAYYYYYYYYYYY more medial pain. I know every person's experience is different, but I would strongly suggest getting a second, and if you're still wondering, a third opinion, before you have surgery. here's hoping you start felling better soon!

Jul 01, 2010
I didnt authorize my plica to be removed
by: scared

I was injured at work march 2010. I went to the hospital. I had to use an urgent care faciliy because it happened at work. The Dr. said I just sprained my knee. I went to physical therapy, iced it, elevated took anti inflamatory meds. It kept hurting and I had to ask for an mri. It was done. 2 different doctors said I tore the cartilage in my knee and would knee surgery. I went in for surgery yesterday to "fix" it. I was in and out in 2 hours. Doctor never came back to me. I go today for my post operation apt and another doctor came showed me some pictures, said they explored around and couldnt find a meniscus tear. He said my plica was inflamed and causing the pain. So they removed it. I didnt authorize that. He said mri's arent 100%. After reading this page I am so scared about my recovery.

Jul 05, 2010
First Surgery
by: Mom of 14 yr. old

My son had surgery to remove plica tissue and cartilage that was rubbing against the bone. Dr. said he would be back to regular activities in 7 days. It has been 8 and he can't even walk yet, and his outer left knee is numb. After all I have read hear, im concernd for him. We know that this may happen in the other knee, but hope not. And one more thing, his was not the result of any injury, Dr said it was just "one of those things."

Jul 07, 2010
Injury or overuse
by: Anonymous

We were told by the doctor the symptoms appear after an injury or due to overuse. So my daughter took a blow to her right knee which caused the plica to become symptomatic and because she then favored her right knee about 1-1/2 years later the left knee also became symptomatic. Hope things go better for your son!

Jul 07, 2010
I am 6 mos post op UPDATE
by: Anonymous

I am now 8 months out from my plica surgery. I have to admit, things have improved but I'm still not 100%. There are some days that my knee feels like it's going to burst from pressure and I still don't have complete ROM. My insurance paid for a TENS unit which helps tremendously. I signed up for a strength and conditioning exercise class and my PT told me that I should not be doing that at this point. I should be using a pool for water resistance exercises (no swimming). Everything that he has told me, so far, has worked and makes sense. He has guided me against "working through the pain" since plica surgery is removing tissue that was overworked or damaged from an injury that has become extremely inflamed and is forming scar tissue. The "no pain, no gain" in this case only causes more inflammation and scar tissue build up - thus repeating the cycle that got you to this point in the first place. He also told me that the recovery takes longer because the blood flow to that area is minimal compared to the other parts of your knee. I work in a Top 100 hospital and found that plica surgery, though being a very simple surgery, is not performed very often. My OS can count on one hand the number he has performed in his career (which has been 20+ years). What does that tell you? Simple surgery to perform from a surgeons view, but very difficult recovery from a PT's view.
Good luck to everyone that goes through this. It is a slow healing process.

Jul 15, 2010
Hope and Healing
by: Anonymous

The above comments have been extremely encouraging to read and know I'm not alone living with this painful lifestyle.
I had surgery to remove my plica in my right knee in late 2008. It didn't change anything and I was told there were no other options.
Now, a year and a half later, my knee still clicks angrily. Sometimes if I step on it 'locked' as I'm walking, it causes an incredible sharp shooting pain. I can not bend and straighten it if I have weight on it or even if it's only supporting itself. I am having to constantly stretch it if I sit still for long periods of time. Once I had to put it out a car window from travelling in the back seat for longer than 20 minutes.
There is an obvious click/thud in my knee you can hear, feel and even see easily when I bend and straighten it.
Though I live in pain every day, I still trust that God has a purpose for all of this. I hope with all my heart He chooses to heal me one day by His miraculous ways. My prayer is that each of you can also find hope and confort knowing that God is in control and He too understands the pain and suffering you're going through and the frustrations of having the seemingly incurable plica syndrome.
Thank you for listening. I will be praying for healing for all of you, because I understand how much you want it.

Aug 03, 2010
my plica syndrome
by: Anonymous

Hi all! I have found all comments very enlightening.
6 weeks ago I was diagnosed with a distended ligaments. One month later (rest and pt) my ligament was fine but then, I developed plica syndrome on the same knee.

After overusing my other leg, my other knee is giving me some grief too. Now I'm having pt in both my knees. This plica was seen in an ultrasound but I don't think it was needed cuz a little bump can be seen on the front of the knee. Now, I am noticing the same thing on my other knee which is also kind of painful.
I am not in an excruciating pain but I do get inflammation and some pain in both knees. After reading your comments, I dont think I am going for a surgery at all but how to deal with the pain and not work out...what will my life will be like?
your comments appreciated

Aug 04, 2010
Family and Pain After Surgery
by: Autumn

I was just wondering how ya'lls families deal with your pain problems. I find that with my family once you had surgery the feeling is that's that you should be better. No understanding with the very notable exceptions of my Mom, Gram, and Cousins up north. Is this the norm with everyone else? I was just wondering. You like to think your family will always support you and help you but in my case I was declared disabled by the state due to my pain and I just don't get the familiar support I expected. It's nice to have everyone on hear and know I'm not alone in the problems I've had ever since my R and L scopes in 2004. Thank you everyone who contributes! My pain management dr (Lorina Gutenberg of San Antonio) is fantastic and very up on the latest stuff. I've been thinking about directing her to this site and see what she thinks if she'd look into it more with other Drs. Let's all hope. If you're in the San Antonio area I highly recommend her as a pain management Dr. She's terrific! Thanks again!!!

Aug 17, 2010
100 % recovery
by: Anonymous

I read this page after 4 months of my plica resection when it was still hurting. I thought my knee would be OK again in 3 months, but it was still pretty bad.

I got pretty depressed, bc all the comments here, I figured it would ever heal.

So for those who are reading this and thinking the same: have some patience, for me it took 7 months to get back to OK and another month or two untill I could use it again 100%.

So there, it took a lot of time, but now its perfect, so it was well worth the pain.

Thats all, good luck everyone.

Aug 19, 2010
20 yrs of pain
by: Anonymous

I had plica surgery in 1992 onL knee and 1993 on R knee I can tell you my knees have not improved and now i have sharp needleing pains in both knees cant sit through a movie or airplane ride without getting up and walking around and when i get out of bed the first 5 steps are slow and painful almost 20 yrs since surgery and knees get worse every year

Aug 20, 2010
by: Anonymous

I had plica surgery June 2009, and it was apparently the biggest mistake of my life. I developed a DVT from the surgery, endured giving myself Lovenox injections and coumadin therapy for months for the clot, and now have Post Thrombotic Syndrome, which means i have a high chance of suffering a heart attack, stroke, aneurysm, or another DVT for the rest of my life...and to top it all off, two of my doctors independently suspect that I now have RSD as a direct result of all of this...AND MY KNEE IS IN WORSE SHAPE THAN BEFORE THE SURGERY!!! I just wanted to post this to make anyone thinking about having this surgery to realize that while it's only a very very low chance of any of this happening to them, it's a possibility.

Aug 28, 2010
Plica not meniscus
by: In Texas

I was diagnosed with R knee meniscus tear in 2008, decided not to have surgery after the doctor would not talk to me until preop. Then he couldn't show me why I needed it.
Then in 2009 L knee popped loudly coming down a ladder, massaged for a while, and in a couple hours it got better. L knee continued to be weak after that, but R knee was still worse. Then hyper-extended L knee when I hit a hole in the yard. Pain was sereve, could sleep at night. Went to GP, recoommended MRI. MRI came back with meniscus tear. Went to surgeon, his first comment was that there was not any meniscus damage, said it was read wrong. After viewing some more slides decided there may be some. Of course he recommended surgery.
Had surgery, good news, no meniscus damage, but injured plicia. Never heard of it, if I had would not have had surgery.
Recovery, Dr gave Celbrex 3 days before surgery and 2 weeks after.
First 2 weeks great, took pain pills for 1 day. Surgery on Friday, back to work Monday.
Dr recommended same PT that he had given for meniscus tear. Started exercise bike 2nd day per instructions, no problems. Doing 20 minutes a day after 5 days,continued for first 2 weeks with no pain.
Within 2 days of ending the Celbrex, pain started. Contacted Dr/nurse, recommended to do every other day and increase resistance. Pain increased. Dr said that was normal. Continued cycling but pain increased.
Decided to rest knee for a week after doing more research on plica. Knee improved, but pain comes back after exercise or walking on unlevel ground.

Surgery was in May, 2010. To date knee pain returns after most activity and requires minimum 3 days rest to improve.

I would not recommend surgery, if you have meniscus tear, be sure it truely is meniscus.
Instruct doctor not to cut the plica, unfornuately most people will never hear the word "plica " until after surgery, I didn't.

My symptoms are similair to most post. Pain and stiffness after sitting for a while, weakness going down stairs or inclines causing pain, giving away/buckling,pops backwards when walking, feels like it hyper-exstends.

I feel fortunate that the pain is less then before surgery, but disappointed after the good start. I do hope that doctors will be more honest and follow up with clients. Mine had no interest in me after the surgery and his staff was very hard to reach.

Do your research, ask a lot of questions, an remember there are no guarantees, and you will have to deal with the results, not the surgeon.

Try a sports doctor, avoid surgeons until all options are exshausted.

I wish all the best in recovery, and hope we can all post that things have improved.

In Texas

Sep 22, 2010
glad i read this
by: Anonymous

looped out skateboarding..5 months ago! reinjured bad'' knee. acl [ reconstucted 8 years ago.. sounds like i might'a jacked up plica.. goin ta' see my surgeon. i dont have much miniscus left !! so no more cuttin' on me!!! thanks for the info

Oct 05, 2010
Plica surgery
by: Anonymous

Hi all, it's great to read your comments. I had plica surgery 4 weeks and also thought i was going CRAZY! I was in too much pain pre op to consider not having it done, but my surgeon didn't know about the plica until he did the scope. Pre-op, i was an active person, going to the gym 3-5 times and a week. I expected recovery to be a lot faster than this. I work as a nurse and i haven't been able to return to work almost 5 weeks later. The pain is manageable, going down stairs is still a nightmare and can't possibly be on feet for long periods of time. My physio has me doing exercise bike and squats and i'm doing more than i should and pay for it later! feeling totally depressed that i'm not back to normal yet, putting on weight because i can't move around as i did, making me more depressed and wanting to eat more! Reading comments that it can take up to a year to recover is FREAKING ME OUT! Praying that the plica doesn't grow back! Best wishes to you all!

Oct 31, 2010
by: Nathan

I had arthroscopic surgery in August 2009 to fix a meniscus tear in my right knee. This was the biggest mistake of my life. I later found out that this surgery is not recommended for anyone over 40. It actually has the best chance of working if you're in your 20s.

Before the surgery I only had pain the day after playing tennis and usually only when walking down stairs. Now I have some pain all the time. I've spent many many months trying physical therapy, acupuncture, heat, cold, massage and injections but nothing brings it back to normal. I can't stay on a treadmill for more than a few minutes or I'll have serious pain for days. My advice to everyone is to get at least 2 opinions from doctors who are NOT surgeons. Surgeons will lie just to make a quick buck. Again I repeat DO NOT GET THIS SURGERY UNLESS ABSOLUTELY NECESSARY!!!

Best wishes to all.

Nov 03, 2010
1 year, 4 months, 3 weeks, and 1 day later...
by: Anonymous

Life has been different to say the least. Since I had surgery, I suffered the DVT from surgery, 3 months of Lovenox and Coumadin therapy, over a year of PT, Post Thrombotic Syndrome, Grade III Chondromalacia, and PTS. I've graduated to Pain Management and a new knee specialist, who has done a much more thorough job checking me out. He had a triple phase bone scan and state of the art MRI done on me, and after these tests he concluded that they should have never performed that surgery on me because it exacerbated the real problem in my knee. Pretty much, the original surgeon totally screwed up, and will now have a malpractice issue to deal with. The doctors also think I have developed RSD as a result of all of this.

Don't do me, the pain you're in is nothing compared to what COULD happen to you.

Nov 09, 2010
not sure whether to have the surgery
by: Anonymous

I have suffered with plica syndrome for about 2 years. I have done cortisone injections and PT with no help. I have resorted to just playing through the pain. Surgery was suggested but I am worried that I just wont be the same afterwards. After hearing many of you have had a similar story, I'm really unsure as to where to go from here.

Nov 11, 2010
by: Anonymous

DO NOT GET SCAMMED INTO GETTING ARTHROSCOPIC QUACKERY. First of all studies clearly show that arthroscopic quackery does nothing for arthritis except make it worse! Second anyone thinking about this surgery should first go to a doctor who is NOT a surgeon but specializes in "rehabilitation". You would almost definitely benefit more from various types of therapies rather than surgery. The surgeon will just lie and say it's a simple procedure but it's not. Only after trying everything else first should anyone even consider surgery. Do you really want to take a chance of never getting better or getting much worse? I know because I had this surgery in August 2009 and realize that I'll never fully recover. I'm much worse now than before the surgery. DON'T MAKE THE SAME MISTAKE!!! Best of luck.

Nov 30, 2010
14 yr. old w/knee pain
by: Anonymous

Daughter is 14 and plays volleyball on natl. team....4 months ago took blow to knee and ever since has had serious knee pain. Finally had possible diagnosis of plica being the culprit. Been through therapy, injections, steriods, and many topical anti-inflamitories....nothing has worked so far. Worried surgery will only bring more problems. Anyone had plica surgery this young?
Also anyone ever tried Muscle Activation Techniques? Looking for anything to help her get back on the court doing what she loves!

Dec 02, 2010
surgery may not be the best choice
by: Anonymous

Sorry to hear about your 14 year old daughter. Before you consider surgery try to find someone who does "COLD LASER THERAPY". I'd recommend finding a physical therapist rather than a chiropractor to have this done. This therapy has helped me after my arthroscopic knee surgery in August 2009. I'm back on the treadmill (after about the 6th cold laser treatment) and my pain is about 80% gone (almost a miracle). Also if you can find a NON-surgical specialist in "Rehabilitative" medicine that would give your daughter a better chance. Surgery should be your last choice only if nothing else has worked and only after getting at least 2 or more second opinions. Don't make the same mistake I made because surgery is not always the best answer. Because your daughter is only 14 she has a great chance of rehabilitating with proper therapy. Good luck with recovery.

Dec 26, 2010
Young Surgery
by: Anonymous

sorry to hear about your 14 year old daughter, i am a 16 year old and i am having the same surgery tomorrow, i will be sure to update you on how it all goes!

Dec 28, 2010
Plica: Nervous for the New Year
by: John H.

I'm still contmplating surgery. I'm a 47 y.o. male that has been to a sports medicine doctor. Same stuff as everyone else:X-ray, MRI, PT, Naproxen, cortisone. Then I was referred to an Orthopod to have steroid pills & 5 synvisc injections. He never mentioned plica until I did. He said the only way to find out is through arthroscopy. I see more bad than good reports on this site. I too was active:spinning, squatting, running. Stairs are a bitch! Can anyone give me a good reason to have this surgery done? Please reply.

Jan 02, 2011
by: Jim

I am having this surgery this Friday Jan 7th, I'll keep everyone updated, if your thinking about the surgery keep in mind, not everyone will post the good results. Most will only post bad results.

Jan 04, 2011
Young Surgery
by: Anonymous

I had my surgery a week ago, I only had to take pain killers for one day, i was able to walk around my house without cruches, and today is my first day fully without crutches but other than a little trouble with stairs everything is going great. i still have my stitches in and they come out tomorrow which will hopefully get my range of motion back to almost 100%

Jan 05, 2011
Plica Syndrome
by: Anonymous

I had surgery December 08, My knee felt better after surgery, however I was on my way to theropy and I slipped on the ice. I have had the pain back ever since. I talked to my doctor about it, he told me that when he removes the plica band he basically just removes what is getting caught by your knee cap. He told me that if he removed the hole band that I would have worse problems. He did say that since I slipped on the ice that I may have re-injured it and I may need surgery again. After seeing everyones comments, it doesnt sound as though a second surgery would help. Thanks for everyones posts.

Jan 05, 2011
Plica Syndrome
by: Anonymous

I had surgery December 08, My knee felt better after surgery, however I was on my way to theropy and I slipped on the ice. I have had the pain back ever since. I talked to my doctor about it, he told me that when he removes the plica band he basically just removes what is getting caught by your knee cap. He told me that if he removed the hole band that I would have worse problems. He did say that since I slipped on the ice that I may have re-injured it and I may need surgery again. After seeing everyones comments, it doesnt sound as though a second surgery would help. Thanks for everyones posts.

Jan 15, 2011
post op
by: Anonymous

I injured my right knee during a bad slide on my inner knee during softball about 11 months ago. doctors told me it was bruising after i injured it, and not to worry. worked with athletic trainers, and was eventually allowed to go back into playing. Ended up that after my first game back the pain came back. I went to my first ortho and had an xray and MRI done- both were fine. Kept having extreme pain, so I got a steroid shot in the knee. The pain went away for only 1 day- then came back. The doctor then scheduled exploratory arthroscopic surgery in september 2010. they found a plica and removed it, but everything else was fine. I was on crutches for 3 weeks- longer than usual for that simple surgery. I wasn't send to PT. My ortho told me he didn't know what to do. So, I went to another ortho, and he gave me absolutely NO results. He told me that I could never run again/ do anything but swim. I joined my school's swim team and my knee actually gives out in the water, despite being taped. It swells and I can barely do more than a 500 at a time. I couldn't take no as an answer, so I went to a 3rd doctor last week.the doctor is making me have a bone scan and CT scan next week. He told me that there might be an issure with scaring now, but he is completely baffled. he was the top orthopedic sugeon/dr in the 80s before he retired out of surgery- so he's a genius. i'm really interested to see what's going to happen! I thought i was the only one with this problem!

Jan 15, 2011
it got even worse
by: Anonymous

Well if you've read this thread, you've seen my other posts--I'm the one that developed the DVT during my plica surgery. Well, as a result of all of the trauma from the surgery, it has been confirmed that I now have RSD. If you don't know what it is, google it. It's horrible, I never imagined that procedure could result in what I'm dealing with now, and for the rest of my life. I wish I could go back and refuse the procedure, but until my time travelling device is perfected, I'm left in constant agony. My advice is DO NOT HAVE THE PROCEDURE!!

Jan 18, 2011
plica grows back
by: Anonymous

i had arthroscopic surgery over 10 years ago for a torn meniscus. I also had plica removed; however, i did not find out about that until a few years ago, when i went to a new orthopod because I dislocated my patella. I showed him the pictures from the first scope and he told me that they had removed plica. He also told me it appeared as though it had grown back! I had never even heard of plica but he was quite familiar because he has the same issue with it. He told me it can grow back completely in as little as five years! I'm lucky because even though I can't do everything I used to, the plica doesn't bother me so much. I wear a hinged orthopedic brace with patellar tracking to keep my kneecap from dislocating so that may be why the plica doesn't flare up. I'm interested in finding out if the other knee has it now. It has been making the strangest noise the last couple weeks. It was so loud that I actually scared myself going down the stairs because I thought someone was following me! I later realized my knee was making that noise! Ahhh...good times!

Jan 18, 2011
post- op (3 weeks)
by: Anonymous

i'm so sorry to hear of all of your pain. i had my surgery about all of your pain... I was walking completely on my own a week after my surgery, other then the occasional soreness everything is going great. i'm easing back into my work outs, strengthening with pt, i've been on a bike and swimming as well. If all stays like this my orthopedic said i could be back to running 5-6 weeks after my original surgery date. and even back to sports a week or two after that. i have VERY few complaints about my surgery. my knee is feeling so much better.

Feb 17, 2011
think 7 times, cut 1 time,
by: Anonymous

Hi everyone. I'm 22, Russia, mpuntainbike rider, and 5 months suffer from pain that is recognized by doctors as a patellofemoral pain syndrom, caused by damaged plica.

Some doctors suggest the surgery, but after reading this comments and some realy serious researches I started to doudt.
And today, finaly, I had a 2-hour conversation about this surgery with one of the best knee-experts in Russia.

So' based on his experience, my pain feeling and many other factors I decide not to do this surgery.
And I strongly recommend anyone NOT to do this surgery.

The reasons, why this doesn’t help is simple. My doctor explains to me these:

1. The Plica is growing back usually VERY easy, VERY fast, and, what is main, it grows back with a huge cicatrices, or scar, caused by surgery. This new plica is much, much thicker than before, and makes more pain.

2. After ANY surgery your quad-muscle atrophy, and this is the muscle that fix patella. So the Articulate crack become bigger on the lateral side, due to the certain reasons, and this make plica to go back EXACTLY to the same position or even deeper.

So the surgery is f*ckin hell:

quad-muscle atrophy -> Plica grow back -> harmful scar on plica -> more pain -> less efficiently of phisical terapy (cause you cant train with this pain) -> quad-muscle atrophy more -> more pain.

So if you ever had any results of conservative treatment - do as much is possible. I'm training for 3 hours a day, + every 2 day swim for about 3 km, and after 4 months I had some improovment.
If you already done the surgery - try start rehabilitation as soon as possible.

Remember, only muscles can help you. So work, work, WORK, any time you have, and work strong: just leg lifts is useless, start from them and go to 15 kilograms weight foot lifts, so on for every exercise. Stretches, swimming, massage, find your PT and ask him for program of 15-20 exercises, 3 hours a day.
You can do it, but be ready for a lot of hard work. Remember – nothing will help you except your own muscles.

And DON’T EVEN THINK of giving up!
You now officially the Rocky Balboa.

Good Luck!

Mar 14, 2011
by: Jamie

I have been having awful knee pain. Started in my left knee and is now in my right knee.cpme to find out i have plica syndrome. the dr wants me to do pt. then try injections if that doesn't work he wants to do surgery. I am so afraid to have the surgery done because i have a 7, and 5 yr. old that i have to take care of by myself but with in the last 6 months i have gone from being an active mom to barely being able to get myself on and off the floor. its hard to squat or anything. I use to carry my daughter and now if i try that forget about it. I just want to know if maybe i should try the surgery?

Mar 14, 2011
I started this page... where i am now!
by: Anne

Hello Everyone!!

Wow I never thought when I put up my story that so many people would have the same problem.

When I had my plica removed I was convinced it was the worst thing that had ever happened. Everything hurt. Everything was worse. I am currently working on my DOCTORATE in physical therapy and have a little more understanding of plica syndrome, patellarfemoral pain and all that good stuff so I just wanted to share.

Plica is a fold in the synovial tissue. Well that makes no sense without having taken a whole lot of anatomy. Basically picture a pill, a medicine capsule- there is an overlap, or a fold in the capsule. This is kind of what your knee is like. The synovium is like the outside of the pill and all of the knee structures are inside. Plica is that overlap.

Plica is a normal thing to have in your knee. Everyone has it and if you know how you can feel it. Sit down, straight legs. Put your hand on your kneecap and slide it inside your legs right along the side of the kneecap. Rub your fingers up and down (like hip to toe but just on the side of your kneecap). Your plica is the stringy hard spaghetti feeling stuff right there!!

Plica syndrome is a secondary problem. You hurt your knee. Your knee swells inside and outside the capsule. The problem is the swelling on the inside because it has nowhere to go. It rubs up against the plica fold and irritates it, causing more swelling, more irritation, and more pain. Bummer.

Mar 14, 2011
I started this page... where i am now! CONT
by: Anonymous

When you have "plica surgery" and the surgeon scopes your knee out, all they are doing is shaving off part of the fold or overlap so it is less likely to get irritated. Nice idea right? Well kind of. The problem is scar tissue forms to heal the cuts the surgeon made and it ends up basically the same thing. Not so good.

Cortisone shots, Synevex and things like that are short term fixes. All they do is either numb the area so you dont feel it for a while, or they put a bit of artificial synovial fluid (synevex = synovial) to pad the area a little bit so it doesnt rub as much. Again, short term fix. You will need new injections every 3-6 months to keep this up and most doctors only allow you so many in your life.

I know long and drawn out. Sorry.
Basically the best thing to do is rest and strengthen. I know from a PT right? What worked for me was McConnell taping. This is a way to keep your kneecap where it is supposed to be when you exercise and lets you strengthen your quad without rubbing on everything and hurting your knee. It took me four different therapists before someone tried this and it really worked!!

This doesn't work for everyone. The point of the surgery is good, and it did work for me. The problem was not enough therapy. I was given 2 days of therapy after my surgery, only one without stitches. If you have a home exercise plan you HAVE TO DO IT. Ask your therapist questions. Insurance is awful and does not give you as many visits as you truly need so you have to continue your therapy at home.

Ask for a reasonable amount of exercises.
Ask which of those exercises are the most important to focus on.
Ask for a progression when you are ready to do harder ones .
Ask how you will know you are ready to move on.
Ask if you can call in a few weeks and talk about progress.

It really is important to do your quad strength but the problem is if the exercise is just making your knee swell more, youre just doing more damage.

Mar 14, 2011
I started this page... where i am now! CONT 2!
by: Anne

Right now my knee is doing pretty well. I am 3 years post plica surgery. While I am not back to where I was before the surgery, I never really expected that. Its not normal to work out 30 hours a week. I do still work out, but I choose my workouts carefully. I do not run and I will probably never run again. When I run my knee swells up, irritates the plica, and hurts even more. Now I bike, I take pilates class, I use the elliptical, and I do a little bit of functional weight-training-ish things (like squats instead of leg press etc.) and it works for me. I think that is the most important thing. You have to keep trying different things until you figure out what is best for you and best for your body.

Good luck to everyone still hurting!!

May 18, 2011
Plica Syndrome
by: angie

I had arthroscopic surgery 10 months ago for to remove a large cyst on my inner knee. Every since the swelling from surgery went down, I have been having alot of pain on the outside of same knee, this has nothing to do with why I had surgery to begin with. I've had a cortisone injection which only helped a few days. I've had a 3 euflexxa injections to restore cushion and lubricant in knee and this didn't help at all. I went back to orthopedic dr yesterday, still having pain on outer side of my knee (same one I had surgery on). He is ordering an MRI but he did say it was Plica Syndrome, that he felt the tissue moving around and I felt it as well. After leaving dr. office, I was reading about Plica Syndrome and everything I have read about it, it says that its on the inside of knee, my pain is on the outside of knee. Everything I have read about it is the same thing I'm experiencing except my pain is on outer knee????

May 23, 2011
Hey Anne who started this page!
by: surlymoon

I've just read thru this entire thread. Thanks for your update and your very clear explanation of everything. Very helpful! Thank you! Can I have you as my PT?

May 30, 2011
by: Anne

I would love too!! : ) What do you need?

Jun 09, 2011
Taping for Plica Syndrome
by: Lauren

Hello Anne,

Your explanation above was excellent, and I wanted to ask you a related question:

I was diagnosed today with plica syndrome but on the lateral plica, on my left knee. I have pain above my left kneecap in the lateral plica as it slides over the femoral condolyte. The pain often generalizes to the fat pads below, especially the left one. Is there a form of McConnell taping that you would recommend to relieve some of the irritation on the plica? I was told my patellar tracking is fairly normal.

I would appreciate any suggestions at all from anyone who has had similar problems. Thank you!

Jun 09, 2011
by: Anne

McConnel taping is specifically for medial patellar tracking. If you are tracking normally, this won't help. I would really try stretching out your IT band a whole lot. That attaches right near the lateral plica and the femoral condyle so that might help...itll take a while though, like stretching any any muscle. Sorry I can't be of more help : )

Jun 09, 2011
Taping for Plica Syndrome
by: Lauren

I roll a LOT on a hard plastic roller, since I've a history of IT problems. Oh well, just a thought! I'll keep up with the resting, icing and stretching though.
And thanks a lot for your response, Anne!

Jul 11, 2011
by: Naomi

Hello everyone,

Reading your comments has been a kind of relief for me: I'm not alone.. Like you Anne, I'm a physical therapist. So I'm supposed to know what to do to achieve the best possible recovery, however it's been far from that.

I had my surgery one year ago, and since then my pain is almost worse than before. I began to think that I was alone in this case and crazy because I had never found other experiences like the ones I just read on this website. Both doctors I saw after the surgery kept telling me that based on the MRI, everything was ok. They seemed annoyed about my complaints..

Additionnally my knee is not swollen anymore, which hurted my credibility. I had a cortisone injection which has relieved the symptoms for maybe 5 weeks. But I do feel that the problem isn't solved!! I still feel some painful "clicks", I'm unable to kneel down, have trouble going down the stairs, and more annoyingly, every physical activity I do begins with an irritating pain in the medial side, right next to the knee cap, and ends up with me taking anti-inflammatory medicine. Usually the pain gets worse in the evening, and in the following morning I feel a dull pain that I think could be similar to arthritis pain.

I enjoy doing sports, I can't imagine having to give up everything because of a pain that as allegedly no medical cause (I'm only 26!).
I'm gonna try everything possible to get out of this.
Keep at it!!

Jul 11, 2011
Plica surgery
by: Anonymous

I had plica surgery 4 months ago and I am much worse
than before. The area of the excison does not recover by any means. They thougth was meniscus, the meniscus was ok and
removed suprapatelar plica.
My question is: since there is no more an important tissue to support the sinovial it will never reheal, would viscossuplement help lubrificate the area?
They use for artrose but migth help in tis case?
Did anyone do it?

Aug 28, 2011
successful operation
by: susie

I had an operation in october 2007 for plica syndrome. Had injured my left knee at work a year before. It was clicking, could not straighten after sitting for any length of time. It was painful all the time. As the months went on I agravated it further by doing physiotherapy and it swelled like a football. I was in a real state. Fortunately the operation sorted it out and about 2 weeks after the op it went back to its normal shape and size and now got my old knee back.I Am proof that sometimes these ops have a good outcome. Good luck to all who have plica syndrome.

Aug 29, 2011
Young Plica
by: Anonymous

I am 15 years old and was 14 at the time i was told i had plica syndrome in my left knee. i am now 7 months post-surgery and while i am not 100% my standreds were very high. I was back in conditioning for high school sports 8 weeks post-surgery. I was given little to no post-surgery PT. I had a few ar home exercises. I am a very active cross-country runner. I have also been told i have plica in my right knee also and will soon under going surgery. The stories i have read have motivated to get back on my feet as soon as i can. For me as a teen sugery is the best route. Less recovery time and i can be fully back in my back next season with no further pain. While i might not be as strong its better than constantly haveing to break for the plica.

Aug 29, 2011
my results
by: surlymoon

Hey everyone! Just wanted to add my experience to all this.

I wasn't officially diagnosed with plica syndrome, but the doctor said since structurally my knee was fine (after mri, etc.) he thought it was probably the plica and he wanted to go ahead and arthroscope my knee and remove "whatever" he found.

Having read this thread, I knew I needed to try physical therapy first and THEN if that didn't work and I can't take it anymore, get the scope done. So I told the doctor I would like to try PT first.

Met with the PT (sorry Anne for not giving you a call) : ) and he totally disagreed with the doctor regarding the problem being the plica. A few months later I am now running with no pain. It took a while but he finally figured out my biggest problem was I'm not firing my glut muscles when I run. I can do all the exercises easily but for some reason putting it all together wasn't happening. Now I really concentrate on my form and it is getting easier.

So, moral of the story is I guess, try other things first and surgery should be done when nothing else is working. I'm surprised at how eager the doctor was to scope my knee. I'm so glad I didn't when I didn't even have plica syndrome!

Sep 12, 2011
4 years ago
by: Anonymous

I had my plica removed about 4 years ago. I was 16 about. The surgery did help me for awhile after it. I think that my knee is overall better because of having the surgery but I do still have some pain in it.

I think that having pain is just going to be a side affect of having surgery. It will never truly be the same because of having to get surgery in the first place but it is nothing that I can't deal with.

The doctor did say that the plica band can grow back but surgery would only be necessary if it is just as bad as before. My other knee occasionally has pain like the other one did before surgery but it could just be because it has to work harder sometimes.

I think that everyone should just think about how having surgery cannot make the knee 100% better. It can just help for the most part.

Oct 13, 2011
Plica Excision
by: Mendes

Hi all. Sorry to hear about all the bad experiences. Scary. I had my Plica removed 8 days ago (both knees) and I can walk easily without crutches. It is true that some movements still cause pain, but I hope the pain goes away with time. After all, there were instruments inside both knees just 8 days ago... it is ok to hurt a bit (I would say).

Oct 13, 2011
pain in the knee
by: 1 year and counting

i had a dance injury september of last year. a fractured knee with deep bone contusion. i figured it took longer than usual to heal, but that was because i was still able to dance (in pain)regardless of the injury. after i finished the show run, i took my six weeks to "heal". followed by physical therapy.three months went by and i had another mri. my ortho at the time told me everything had healed and seemed to think all i needed was pain pills and thats why i was there. i was upset that he assumed that when i never asked for them. i knew something was wrong with my knee and he wasn't listening to me. i had a difficult time withrange of motion, popping and clicking, terrible sharp pains,swelling, fluid, the whole nine yards.i slept with my legs elevated for 6 months. i switched othos for a second oppinion and he ordered an arthrogram with an mri (injecting 33 cc of contrast followed by an mri). this showed plica. lots of scar tissue as well. because it had been 6 months since the injury, and the plica had not gone down on its own, he went in on 4/1/11 to remove it. he notified me that it can work great or the results can be difficult. he stated that with any knee surgery results can be hard to cope with. i took my chances out of desperation and missing my love; performing.i also figured that id be okay knowing my sister had the same surgery and was running her 10mile run on a regular basis a month later! since my surgery, ive had 3 injections, one fluid draining, stiffness, impossible range of motion that took 5 months to become normal, and constant nagging pain. my leg feels full and tight. i couldnt even run if an angry pit bull was chasing me! i miss performing. ive become depressed. i had to get a full time desk job instead of doing what i love for a living. its hard to sit all day long. and the weight gain form not being active! lets not even go there!!! i recently saw my 2nd ortho after another mri and found out that i have a mass of scar tissue in the notch. he refuses to remove it because of the stiffness that i had with the previous surgery. he ordered that i stop p.t because i got my range back but am not able to run,aquat,jump,cycle due to the pain. last week i saw my third ortho! he stated that the mass needs to be removed to heal. but my chances of starting this over is pretty big. i have to think and pray about it. my career and life has been put on hold for a year now. a year and counting. i came online to find some comfort and to know im not alone is just that...comforting. but at the same time its unfortunate to know that this plica issue is so big and growing. best of luck to everyone who knows whats this is like. were in this together! keep your head up.

Nov 05, 2011
Plica Syndrome
by: Kristen

I was diagnosed with Patello-femoral Pain Syndrome, but my doctor is obviously not so clever, and said that I could have possible Plica Syndrome. I'm almost 100% positive I hate Plica Syndome now. Everytime I walk or bend my knee a loud click happens and you can feel something popping on the outer side of my left knee. I was put in PT, but the excersises dont help at all, infact they hurt more! The doctor said that he wouldnt give me surgery because i'm "okay". I went back to the doctor and he seems to think im crazy. For some reason my knee never pops as much when I go to the doctor, very little actually. My right knee has began grinding and feels like popcorn when you bend it, and my mom refues to take me to the doctor because she thinks its the same thing. Could it be? Do my symptoms match up with the ones you had with Plica Syndrome?

Nov 05, 2011
by: Anne

That doesn't sounds a whole lot like plica syndrome. Plica is on the inside of your knee, not the outside. Does it click and pop when it is bent a lot or just a little? It sounds more like meniscus to me...but without feeling a knee its really hard to tell.

Nov 07, 2011
1 Month After Plica Surgery
by: Mendes

Can't run, but making progress. Yesterday cycled for 15 minutes and was pretty much ok. But still have pain walking (won't even try running for now)

Nov 08, 2011
by: one year and counting

had my first euflexxa injection yesterday. i have to say after all the needles ive had shoved into this knee, this was the worst. my nerves went crazy in the lower half of my leg for the rest of the day. a little sore today, but better. i have two more doses left. the dr thinks this may be an alternate solution to my pain and mobility issues since im not a good candidate to surgery after the last one giving me all these issues. trying to stay optimistic!

-one year and counting

Nov 20, 2011
by: Windy

I had my left knee scoped in September and had Plica removed my knee hurts worse and is more swollen than before the scope. No pt involved. I'm going back to the doctor who did the scope to have him inject it. If this doesn't work I'm going for a second opinion, I can't live like this.

Nov 27, 2011
euflexxa progress
by: Anonymousone year and counting

Windy im sorry you're not doing well. I just had my third euflexxa injection last Monday and i have noticed a change. When I go up stairs, I don't feel the bone to bone pressure. I am being very careful wig not over doing it. I'm feeling a little optimistic for the first time in 7 months. My swelling is still an issue though, Which started Wednesday night. First swelling in a month at least. Taking it easy for two months to let he injections set in drs orders, and then deciding on what therapy to start with.... Until then, stay positive friends... Were not alone in this!

- Ashley

Nov 28, 2011
by: Mendes

Had plica removed from both knees in October (4th). First steps running yesterday... 3 minutes... 7 kms/h.

Dec 04, 2011
should I get the surgery NEW
by: Anonymous

I am 17 and was diagnosed with Plica Syndrome, and I am scheduled for a Plica removal on thursday. I have tried KT tape, physical therapy, and rest. Should I get the surgery? I am a level 9 gymnast and want to get back as soon as possible. What is the best option?

Dec 05, 2011
To: 17yrs old Anonymous NEW
by: Anonymous

What I can tell you is that I got both removed on the 4th of October and the maximum I was able to run was 13 mins without pain. That does not mean it was a bad decision, but that it might take you a good while to recover (some people mention a year). If you are 17 it should be quicker.

Dec 06, 2011
Thanks NEW
by: Anonymous

Thank you for your advice. I am happy to hear that it will recover eventually.

Dec 08, 2011
1+ year after plica removal NEW
by: BD

I had the scope done in November 2010, all went fairly well. I'm a healthy 32 year old with nothing to signify high risk for a bad recovery. I did have tremendous swelling which slowed the healing process a bit, but was able to start PT after about 3 weeks. Thank goodness for PT! I read someone's post saying they didn't have PT. Why? Dr's never ordered it? I wouldnt be walking without it! When I started post surgery, I couldn't bend my knee at all. It took several months before I felt like I could "trust" my knee to not give out or send shooting pains when I bent wrong. Overall the surgery did improve my knee. Definately not 100% but better. I am quite active: running, hiking, at the gym every day, etc. Now over a year later, my knee swells every day and I'm starting to have more pain, not to mention the grinding! I'm glad to hear I'm not the only one experiencing post pains. Has anyone tried any braces post-surgery? Wondering if something would help. And I agree with everyone- thought this would be a quick & easy procedure- boy was I wrong!

Jan 10, 2012
2 weeks since surgery NEW
by: Dan

I had a plica removal 2 weeks ago, I started doing PT since day #4, I will let you guys know about my progress, it is hard to judge results too soon.

Feb 07, 2012
still in pain NEW
by: Anonymous

Hi I'm 4 years post surgery, and eventhough my recovery went pretty fast (I'm a yoga enthusiast and could complete my ashtanga practice two months after surgery) I still have pain. I was diagnosed with tendonitis on my right knee, which led to plica syndrome because of the swelling. After a few months with p.t. and cortisol inyeccions, the only solution was surgery, and the doctor decided it was best if he removed the plica from both my knees. Now a days my right knee (the "damaged" one) is perfect, the left knee on the other hand, hurts if i squat, if i go up and down the stairs, etc. I wonder if it's in a worse condition because it didn't undergo p.t. or inyeccions. I work out on pilates reformers daily, and my quads stregth is good, but there's a notable diference between my left and right knee. what should i do??

Feb 21, 2012
I wonder NEW
by: Pedro Guedes - Portugal

I had my plica taken out 11 months ago. As everybody I cannot do most of the things. Pain is all there is left where the plica was excised.
I wonder if doctors do this to professional soccers,
carreers would be over. Anybody knowns of any case?

Feb 21, 2012
Pedro Guedes NEW
by: Anonymous

Pedro, I am from Portugal as well. Today was finally able to run 7 kms... at 8 mins/km (should I say walking?). After 5 months I am getting really worried about the recovery. Pain is still there especially going up and down stairs.

Mar 02, 2012
17 year old athlete -failed surgery NEW
by: Anonymous

My son developed knee pain while training for triathlon in the spring of 2010. After months of PT with no improvement, we took the advice of an orthopedic surgeon to remove the medial plica and synovial tissue in both knees. The physician told us his chances of complete recovery within 30 days were 95%. He was given no crutches or braces of any kind and walked out of surgery.

After 2 months the surgeon informed us that he had "failed" the surgery and we should seek a second opinion. Months of additional PT, rolfing, orthodics, cortisone shots and specialists followed. In June of 2011 he had another surgery on his right knee to remove scar tissue by Dr. Steadman in Vail. He has not been able to return to athletics of any kind and has just started walking without crutches within the last 3 months. He is currently being treated with acupuncture several days per week.

We are concerned that he will getting between classes in college next year. I don't think I'd recommend surgery for this condition to anyone.

Mar 08, 2012
still in pain NEW
by: Anonymous

Hi, i got my knee checked a few weeks ago, and it turns out i deveolped scar tissue between the meniscus and a tendon in the patella post op. I was given a cortison shot in the knee and and it did nothing. So i'm having surgery a few weeks from now. any suggestions?

Apr 03, 2012
Plica 1 year of pain NEW
by: Lee

It amazes me how much people differ with the surgery vs just PT. I have had this pain and issue for over a year now. When I originally got hurt I was training for the police academy. I must say, running for me has never been an issue as I am a military veteran. I was running one day and I noticed something that felt like a tear and a pain in my knee like your hit your funny bone in your elbow. I eventually got an appointment with the military VA in which they did not do anything but tell me it was tendinitis as they gave me a cortisone shot. It didn't help.

Police academy came along and I was about a month into it and couldn't help my pain in my knee, so I went to a specialists. I was put through an in depth MRI in which he determined it was plica. He told me at my age,(at the time 23) sometimes a cortisone may help and defuse the issue. It is now 8-10 months later, 4 cortisone shots later and I go back in June to determine if I need surgery. I am guessing by the way my knee still hurts I will need it.

My biggest issue is that I am still in the army national guard. I have to stay in shape for that and being in law enforcement. This past weekend I had a military competition that I had to compete in. Of course my biggest fear for the competition was my knee giving me issues. While I couldn't train up for it due to the plica, I still competed. One of the things I had to do was a ruck march. A ruck march is basically carrying big back pack with about 50lbs worth of gear on your back for miles and miles. I couldn't finish that event because my knee gave out and swelled up on me bad.

I have forgotten to mention that my knee doctor did provide me a supported knee brace. In most cases of running it helps to a limited case. I can run on a tread mill with my knee brace and I'll be fine sometimes for a couple miles. I am just sick of being in pain and having to limp around. I am unable to do squats, leg press or anything that deals with weight that my knees have to do work on. Ibuprofen does not help and my prescription of Mobic 15mg doesn't help either. If anyone has suggestions, please send them my way. It would be greatly appreciated.

Apr 15, 2012
2 years post surgery NEW
by: Anonymous

I had the Plica in my right knee removed back in February 2010. I had been dealing with pain for four years since I took a blow to my knee playing baseball. I tried everything to fix it, I had pt and cortisone shots but it was only temporary relief. In January 2010 I had my last cortisone injection that failed. I was able to walk the day after with a lot of pain and stiffness. I was able to fell better about a month later. I was able to get rid of all of the swelling for about six months. So far it has been pretty good. I have days of extreme stiffness especially when it is cold outside. I also have noticed I get stiffness and pain if I do a lot of running and play a lot of basketball. I have been lucky in the sense that it is a lot better since I had surgery. The key is walking a lot when you can as soon as possible. It may be painful but it is worth it. I am also lucky in the sense that I have never had a problem with my left knee at all. The surgery is far from perfect but it is better if you do the rehab after surgery. I would recommend that anyone who considers the surgery make sure that all of the options before surgery have been exhausted. Best of luck to anyone who is considering the surgery and best of luck to anyone who is recovering from the surgery.

Apr 16, 2012
Plica Recovery NEW
by: Mendes

6 months after both knee plica surgery I was finally able to run 10 kms. It was at 7min/km but I managed to get to the end. Bits of pain here and there, but nothing too bad. I am finally improving, but I believe it will take a full year.

Apr 16, 2012
Plica Recovery NEW
by: Mendes

6 months after both knee plica surgery I was finally able to run 10 kms. It was at 7min/km but I managed to get to the end. Bits of pain here and there, but nothing too bad. I am finally improving, but I believe it will take a full year.

Apr 16, 2012
Plica NEW
by: Windy

I started the insanity workout a month ago and it has helped my knees tremendously!!!!, I feel great all over specially my knees, haven't hurt or have been swollen in over a month

Apr 18, 2012
by: Anonymous

What is the insanity workout? D injured knee playing soccer in October. 5 months of PT, ionto, etc. didn't help. D had plica surgery 5 weeks ago. OS originally estimated 4-6 week recovery. Now he's saying 12 weeks. Reading other posts has me worried it may be multi-year. Pain, ROM is currently worse than pre-surg levels. She hasn't been able to do any sports since Oct, so PT and walking has been only exercise. Would love to hear more about the workout.

Apr 18, 2012
Insanity NEW
by: Windy

It's a 60 day work out program from Shaun t. Before I started, I put ankle weights on, started at 1.5 lbs leg lifts and worked my way up to 3.5 lbs. decided to do insanity because it uses your own body, no bands, no weights just your own body, my legs are alot stronger and no knee problems... When I started I had to modify some of the , because I wasn't used to exercising, now I'm stronger and my range of motion is much much better!!!!

Apr 28, 2012
Plica surgery is a mistake. NEW
by: Anonymous

Plica surgery is a mistake.
Plica is a membrane, a kind of skin so it vascularizates and protects. If you take it out you
loose vascularization and protection in the area.
Besides the traumatic procedure the knee will never
be the same. Cannot stand big stress, cold, etc, kind of never heals back.
Not to mention scar tissue.
Doctors should experiment on themselves to see they are on blind mistake.
Imagine a wound that takes out the superficial skin, no blod. The sensitive sensation is similar.
Knees are gone for good. Sorry to say but do not count on time will heal.

Apr 30, 2012
Plica NEW
by: Windy

You can recover as I have done, strength training and conditioning is all you need, I have recovered from plica removal and am doing things I haven't done in ages, don't give up hope, heeling can be achieved!!!!!!!!!!

May 01, 2012
Not that bad NEW
by: Anonymous

I am clearly recovering. It takes time, but apparently a full recovery will be achieved. Remember that people that have already fully recovered will not come back to the internet to comment.

May 18, 2012
healed from plica surgery? NEW
by: Anonymous

You can recover as I have done, strength training and conditioning is all you need, I have recovered from plica removal and am doing things I haven't done in ages, don't give up hope, heeling can be achieved!!!!!!!

Ok, you say you did, after how many years?
You don´t feel even any discomfort?

Jun 06, 2012
Live with it. NEW
by: Anonymous

I have had plica for like 5 months now and have learnt to live with it. I still go cycling a lot and feel as if I wanted, I could still run and do other physical activities, streching and strengthening the quads cycling helped me.


Jun 11, 2012
worst mistake of my life NEW
by: Anonymous

After 2 years after plica excision my knee never recovered.
The area where the plica was excised has no compliance to support any kind of harder activity.
Even normal live is pain. Even at rest it hurts.

I live in pills, compex , ice all the time.
I am done for the rest of my live.

Jun 11, 2012
It takes time NEW
by: Anonymous

Not that bad. After 8 months I am able to run 9 Kms twice a week at 6,5min/km. Before surgery was limited to 4 Kms... Once a week. Not everything great but better than before.

Jun 18, 2012
Successful surgery NEW
by: Tony

I fell in a parking lot, knew I hurt my knee (landed entire weight on knee cap) did 6 weeks of PT. MRI showed nothing. Had a scope. Doc found I had fractured under side of patella (a "fissure" type fracture) and had "biggest piece of plica" he had ever seen getting caught in the "fissure". He shaved down my patella about half way. Removed the pluca. I went home same day. Went from almost no weight bearing for 6 weeks Prior to surgery to walking on that leg the same day of surgery. Other than a mild ache when weather changes I had a complete success. Grinding sensation went away. I only missed three days of work from beginning to end. I work in the operating room on my feet for ten or more hours daily. PT was awesome. And I was already back to running 6weeks after surgery. Aggressive PT and forcing myself to use my knee really helped strengthen it. My doc said I excelled at my recovery and that he would never doubt me again when I said I was hurting. Had told him I knew I really damaged it and he trusted me despite the MRI being "unremarkable" but then I have never been a text book case on anything. But he was incredible. I used Dr.Lorton in Tulsa Oklahoma. Best knee doc and best staff ever.

Jun 18, 2012
Successful surgery NEW
by: Tony

I fell in a parking lot, knew I hurt my knee (landed entire weight on knee cap) did 6 weeks of PT. MRI showed nothing. Had a scope. Doc found I had fractured under side of patella (a "fissure" type fracture) and had "biggest piece of plica" he had ever seen getting caught in the "fissure". He shaved down my patella about half way. Removed the pluca. I went home same day. Went from almost no weight bearing for 6 weeks Prior to surgery to walking on that leg the same day of surgery. Other than a mild ache when weather changes I had a complete success. Grinding sensation went away. I only missed three days of work from beginning to end. I work in the operating room on my feet for ten or more hours daily. PT was awesome. And I was already back to running 6weeks after surgery. Aggressive PT and forcing myself to use my knee really helped strengthen it. My doc said I excelled at my recovery and that he would never doubt me again when I said I was hurting. Had told him I knew I really damaged it and he trusted me despite the MRI being "unremarkable" but then I have never been a text book case on anything. But he was incredible. I used Dr.Lorton in Tulsa Oklahoma. Best knee doc and best staff ever.

Jul 04, 2012
post surgery relief NEW
by: Angie

Hi everyone,

Sorry to hear the horror stories, but I have great news about my experience. My surgery was performed by Dr. John Deitch, Director of Sports Medicine Wellspan Orthopedics in York PA. I am a 42 year old very active female and here is my experience with surgery.

Back in March 2012 my knee buckled in karate and I couldn't walk. Saw a doc at the emergency injury clinic the next day and was told tendonitis and bursitis. Got a Cortisome shot. A month later fell and hit both knees hard. So I was sent to PT and another cortisome shot. Well, by beginning of June I was useless in karate and I couldn't continue Zumba because of the pain. I got another MRI and was told I had a spider web of cracks on my patella and torn meniscus and was scheduled to see a Surgeon. My surgery was June 27th. Seems the patella was healing fine, just some clean up was done. The meniscus was healing great too, I tore it at the best possible spot for recovery, so he left it alone. He discovered I had more plica than he had ever seen before and some of it was torn and getting caught. He removed it from both sides of my knee and I feel great. Day after surgery I could do two exersices for quad and calf but was unable to bend the knee without pain, but I kept at it. Got some great pictures of the before and after shots of the inside of my knee that day and the kids think it's cool to see inside mommy. On day 5 I was back at PT and almost had normal motion and I graduated down to one crutch and from the compression stocking to a knee sleeve. By day 6, I was walking up and down stairs and getting around most of the time without a crutch and no swelling. I went hiking with kids for just a few miles but used the crutch as needed for steeper inclines and steps as a precaution, "don't tell the Dr.". The knee was fatigued by end of day and I iced it overnight. I have only needed two pain pills since surgery.

Today is one week post op and I feel fine. The only aggrevating part is the steri strips pulling on the skin when I try some movements. I go back on Friday to surgeon and more PT, day 9 post-op, and I hope to be officially off crutches and will move over to their sports injury rehabilitation program and work with a personal trainer to get me back 100%. I have a karate test on July 16, 19 days post-op and I will be teaching Zumba on the 19th, 21 days post-op. I plan to go in and have my right knee done in late August since I have pain and popping in it too and the doctor believes with the amount of plica I had in my left, it's causing the discomfort in the right too. I should be recovered in time for ski season. Woo Hoo!

Jul 04, 2012
Plica NEW
by: Windy

It's been almost a year since surgery on both knees and they haven't hurt or been swollen since I started the insanity program! I had surgery in August of last year on right knee and surgery in October on left where they removed the plica.

Aug 01, 2012
Continued Swelling and Pain Post-Plica Surgery NEW
by: Anonymous

I'm one month post plica band surgery. Range of motion is not a problem and hasn't been since several days after the surgery. My main problem is with the swelling that never goes down(even with ice and elevation) located above the knee and along the inner side of the knee. Along with this is a pain that I can only say feels like "nerve" pain-- intense, stabbing, cutting, shock-like pain that hits "out of the blue" and continues for hours at a time in a manner that comes on hard, releases a little, intense again, and on and on. I did not have PT after my surgery because my physician felt it wasn't necessary. But now, he's pressing for me to do PT. Like I said, range of motion and using the knee is not a problem and after reading other people's accounts of ongoing PT not helping, I'm wondering if this is just going to take more of my time and money. My first appt. is tomorrow morning, so I'm going to go see what the therapist has to say; but I will question them good as to what they are working to acheive. Has anyone else out there had swelling and pain of this type-- without a range of motion problem? I can walk fine- no limp.
It would be great to hear what others have to say who have been through this.

Aug 28, 2012
surgery NEW
by: Anonymous

I had surgery on my left knee about 5 years ago, but it was only cartilage. I had my second knee surgery last july on my right knee for a plica band. I have been having the same problem lately that I had before I had it done. My left knee only gives me trouble every now and then, but my right knee locks up when I bend down or it hurts to put pressure on it.

Sep 12, 2012
3 years post op NEW
by: Anonymous

I had Plica surgery in 2009 on my right knee. Since then, I have little to no pain, but the joint is so stiff. I have limited range of motion, despite stretching. I returned to work within a week after surgery. Also, the entire leg, especially around the knee, seems to be larger than my left. Going up and down stairs still presents a problem to me. Obviously, after reading all these comments, something is not right with the surgery.

Sep 12, 2012
3 years post op NEW
by: Anonymous

I had Plica surgery in 2009 on my right knee. Since then, I have little to no pain, but the joint is so stiff. I have limited range of motion, despite stretching. I returned to work within a week after surgery. Also, the entire leg, especially around the knee, seems to be larger than my left. Going up and down stairs still presents a problem to me. Obviously, after reading all these comments, something is not right with the surgery.

Sep 26, 2012
Some explanations for your problems NEW
by: Charley

I had arthroscopies on both my knees in 2007 to remove inflamed plicae with immediate and drastic improvement. I had virtually no knee pain whatsoever for years.
In 2010 I started to experience pain again in both knees. I went back to the doctor who had diagnosed and excised my plica syndrome, as no one I had seen before him had any clue what was wrong, and he recommended physical therapy. PT helped some, but not as much as I had hoped. Then one day during PT, one of the therapists noticed that the skin on my knees was very cold to the touch. He consulted the doctor who took another look at my knee, and they agreed I had a somewhat non-classical case of CRPS (complex regional pain syndrome).
CRPS is a condition that involves excessive sensitization of the nerves in part of the body, causing them to interpret many non-pain sensations as pain and transmit them to the brain as such. While the disorder itself is very poorly understood, it almost always follows some type of trauma whether from an injury or a surgery, and it CAN be treated---in fact, you can do so at home, with no additional expenses.
If your pain is all over or throughout your knee, if the skin on your knee ever feels hot or cold to the touch (compare it to the skin on your thigh and shin if you are not sure), or if you experience more pain when an object is touching your knee (such as long pants), you may be suffering from CRPS. The way to treat this is to rub the affected area with cloth. Start with something very soft, and do this for about 5 minutes per day. You can and should continue to use ice or hot compresses to reduce your pain during the rest of the day if these work for you. Over time, rub your knee with progressively coarser fabrics. If you have CRPS, it is likely that this will improve your symptoms. This method works by de-sensitizing the over-sensitized nerves that are causing your pain, returning them to normal levels of sensation.

Oct 27, 2012
Remove scar from plica surgery NEW
by: Anonymous

On the result from my plica surgery I have a scar glued on the patella and femur codile.
I also have a slight outside tilt of the patella.

The scar maltracks the patella and gives pain.

Doctors say I should have an arthroscopy to clean the scar and make a lateral release to aliviate the tension on the inner side of the knee.

This makes sense but looks so risky.

Have anyone been through this?

Dec 20, 2012
Plica removal - Now knee won't bend fully NEW
by: Andrew

Hi everyone,

I had my plica removed in my left knee 3 months ago. Now 3 months later I still can't bend my knee back fully and the surgeon says there is nothing else he can do for me. My physio is on the verge of being knocked out as he keeps forcing my knee to bend while I am swearing my head off and tears streaming out my eyes. They keep telling me I need to do a rehab course (I'm in the military by the way) but I have done 4 courses already and know this won't help. I can't do one revolution of a bike, I can't use a rowing machine etc it's driving me bonkers ! If anyone knows why I can't bend my knee fully or has the same issue please please PLEASE help me by e-mailing me direct to I'd REALLY appreciate your help before I go mad.

Merry Christmas to you all !

Mar 29, 2013
2 Months after plica shaving NEW
by: Anonymous

Overused my knees in 2009. Pain when biking for more than 20 minutes and pain when swimming and other sports.
Got 1 injection - not so much pain. Took nr 2 injection (should never done that) my joint capsule broke and fluid leaked out.
It healed in 1-2 months.
Got sugery to see weather it was plica or something else.
They found nothing and shaved plica.
Now for 2 months I had problems with keeping fluid inside knee joint!
It leaked out after 1 months after surgery because fysio therapi wanted me on a bike and we did some minor balance practice.
I have been sick to my stomach that it will never heal. Only rest helps it not to swell inside knee, and when it is swelled my foot is so Cold because the pressure from the knee fluid is in the way.
I cant Work on my quad because then the knee gets swollen and burn at night!
Will this ever stop.. I am really unhappy and only 25 years old.
Can walk and that's it.. nothing else at this point. Stairs makes the joint fluid come out

Apr 07, 2013
medial meniscus and plica NEW
by: paul

I injured my knee sprinting and tore my medial meniscus in July 2012. I went to PT and it helped a bit but I still had pain. I scheduled my surgery for Dec. A small meniscus tear was removed but he said he removed plica also (I didn't know what it was). Anyway my recovery was terrible and I am 4 month. The most troubling thing is I never had a plica problem but they remove it anyway if it looks inflamed or whatever, well thanks alot now my recovery is crapola. It hurts no matter what I do if I walk to 10 mins it hurts, if I bike it hurts, eliptical hurts after. I hear so many horror stories about plica why do they remove it. I am so depressed. I feel like telling the doctor to eff himself. How long does this take to heal??? I knew something wasn't right after a few months with little improvement. The Orthopedics are a holes!!!!!!!!!!

Apr 08, 2013
4 the rest of our lifes NEW
by: Anonymous

Yes, we all, who have plica taken, will have to live
in pain for the rest of our lifes. After inflamation settles a bit we wil have to live with an painful scar all over the knee medial side.

Any kind of impact sport, even run, is over.

Doctors know this but still they take them out.

They take it on anonymous people like us not on famous sport athletes because those might ruin their reputation on the media.

Imagine messi or ronaldo being taken plicas, bye-bye football and the doctor reputation.

Apr 08, 2013
Plica Surgery NEW
by: Anonymous

Surgery 4th October 2011. Still in some pain. Was able to go skiing without discomfort last week. Not sure if those who write here are a relevant sample... But if they are, then doctors should know better.

May 02, 2014
Plica/Chondromalacia NEW
by: Anonymous

I went to the doctor a few days ago and was told that I have plica and chondromalacia in both knees. The doctor prescribed PT and my first appointment is next week. Is this really going to help???? I was told also to rest my knees and take ibuprofen. Well I drive an hour and a half one way to work so it would be impossible for me to rest my knees because by the time I get to work and back home, I am in so much pain. And I tried taking ibuprofen and it doesn't help much. Also, I am in the military and am required to do all the lifting, walking, running, etc. Will I have to live with this pain forever??? Reading some of the stories about the surgeries on here have me frightened to even consider that route.

Jan 11, 2015
both knees different results NEW
by: Vickie

My left knee was scoped in August of 2011 thinking I had a MCL tear they couldn't see. The MCL was fine but he told my husband and I he removed Plica and "polished" my knee cap. I left the hospital on crutches and was VERY slow to recover. PT started literally within 24 hours of surgery. I cried thru it for days and then started feeling better. So fast forward a couple of years. I fell on a beach in April (protecting that left knee) and hurt my right knee. Now mind you I didn't know what I hurt but I sure hurt something. An ER trip and back to the Ortho doc who did the left knee I was told it was "soft tissue" damage. I demanded a MRI in late May. June 7th my birthday I get the call. Stress fracture to the head of the Femur and the tibia. Crutches and a brace for months. No better. Sept 11, 2013 I head back to the OR. Again the doctor removed Plica he says. Less than a year later. July 29 2014 we are back in OR. We are military so this is a whole new state and whole new doc. AGAIN. Plica is removed. Thought it couldn't grow back? Now here we are in Jan of 2015. Guess what. No better. MRI last week and I bet money they want to go back in to remove Plica again. This time I want the lateral release as well. Everything I read says one is useless without the other.

Mar 30, 2015
Recurrence plica area pain NEW
by: Anonymous

Daughter had plica removal in September 2014. Did full pt schedule. Return to full activity. Tennis and ran track fro several weeks in March. Sudd key started having pain in same area on knee where surgery performed. Is this just scar tissue or something we should be more concerned about. We have stopped tennis and track immediately after she complained about pain. Any suggestions.

Mar 30, 2015
Recurrence plica area pain NEW
by: Anonymous

Daughter had plica removal in September 2014. Did full pt schedule. Return to full activity. Tennis and ran track fro several weeks in March. Sudd key started having pain in same area on knee where surgery performed. Is this just scar tissue or something we should be more concerned about. We have stopped tennis and track immediately after she complained about pain. Any suggestions.

Mar 30, 2015
Recurrence plica area pain NEW
by: Anonymous

Daughter had plica removal in September 2014. Did full pt schedule. Return to full activity. Tennis and ran track fro several weeks in March. Sudd key started having pain in same area on knee where surgery performed. Is this just scar tissue or something we should be more concerned about. We have stopped tennis and track immediately after she complained about pain. Any suggestions.

Apr 04, 2015
Plica and Neuroma Surgery NEW
by: Anonymous

I've had several traumas to my knee over the years. There was a lump on the edge of my knee which was a neuroma which was removed during surgery along with my plica. From the start i thought the lump was the cause of pain, doctor said he didn't think it was. Could feel the lump right under the skin, and it was where the pain radiated from after activity. There was also tenderness and numbness in the plica area, so i agreed to have it taken out. Went to physical therapy before surgery, PT played it off like she didn't know what it was. Surgery was 12 days ago, i have a small lump right under my knee almost right ontop of my ACL which is super painful when i first get up but it gets a little better with movement. After reading all this, I wish I just had the neuroma removed. But it is still to early for me to tell. When I am not in any motion, there is no pain what so ever just 12 days after surgery. At the end of the surgery, they said the doctor said that he thinks the neuroma was the problem, which is what i said from the start. Its very heart breaking that doctors are unwilling to listen to their patients who are paying good money to see them and that they would do a procedure that doesn't help, and that causes more problems.

Apr 13, 2015
plica surgery ruined my life NEW
by: squeeker

i had an exploratory scope for a suspected meniscus tear in june 2008. the surgeon didn't find any such trauma. But he said he did find some plica. specifically a very large medial patellar plica and a large vascular infra patellar plica. So what do you do when you find a plica? well if your a dumb fucking orthopaedic surgeon with shit for brains and a trigger happy scalpel you cut that shit out of course. you stupid motherfucker. nothing was wrong with my plica. no tear, no trauma, no pain, no complaints. you just find a plica and cut it out because your bored at work? what the fuck were you thinking you dumb motherfucker. if i had a gun and you were still alive i would shoot you in the knees… no kidding here folks. justice is for the rich i have found in attempting to file for medical malpractice so that means vigilanti shooting must be permissible. i am shocked at the raw stupidity of these medical morons. my life has been ruined. i have lost my job (dream job), home, savings, and lifestyle and now live in severe chronic pain doped up on painkillers. i would, i swear to god shoot the fucking surgeon… but he god a brain tumour and died… so instead i will frequent his grave and shit and piss all over the fucking thing. it's unbelievable that these fuckers can get away with this shit.

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