Dear Dr. Kantor,
My dilemma is not about whether I have MS or not but advice on another procedure I am due to have carried out.
In September last year I had problems with my legs to the point of being unable to walk for a time, which ended in being referred to an orthopedic surgeon. An MRI on my knees in January this year revealed that the right knee has some reduced space, bits of bone / debris and a tear in the meniscus cartilage. This was anticipated as it has given me problems for approximately 12 years. An arthroscopy was recommended and is booked to go ahead on 1st May.
However, the surgeon felt that the main problem with my legs that I had been referred for was probably neurological –and adviced me to talk to my neurologist.
I had a further meeting with my neurologist last week to discuss the symptoms I had experienced in my legs. I was diagnosed with mild MS in December last year and during the diagnosis phase we had not considered my knees / legs as I had been told by my GP it was a physical injury, caused by overuse. The neuro has now ordered an MRI of the spine, a full neurological exam (it did not include my legs last time) and an LP if the first 2 tests are not conclusive. He also said 'Are you sure you have enough pain in the right knee for surgery?', as he is now sure that my leg problems were typical for MS.
During my leg problems the left knee was much worse but no problems were detected on the MRI.
My questions are:
Should I go ahead with an arthroscopy or delay it until my MS diagnosis process is complete?
As the operation is predominately diagnostic, although he does think my knee will be more 'comfortable' afterwards, would it be an unnecessary risk having a full anesthetic for a diagnostic operation, are there extra risks with MS in this?
Thank you and sorry to be so long winded but the story is a real mix up of symptoms being mistaken by both me and my GP.