Kriti’s story. Knee reconstruction for the bride-to-be

Kriti's story: Urgent knee reconstruction for the bride-to-be

As Kriti Singh stepped off the dance floor at her thirtieth birthday party in Varanasi, India, she felt a sharp pain in her right knee. With a ten-year history of knee trouble, this didn’t bode well. Kriti knew straight away something wasn’t right, but what was really worrying was that this was supposed to be her ‘good’ knee.

“As soon as I felt it, I thought, ‘oh no!’” says Kriti. “I’d already been through three surgeries on my left knee, and three very long recoveries dealing with crutches and knee braces. I really wasn’t ready to go through all that again with the right knee.”

Kriti, an IT Product Manager who lives and works in London, was on holiday visiting relatives and celebrating her long-awaited thirtieth birthday at her grandmother’s house. Technically, Kriti had just turned 31 but, due to the pandemic, the celebration had been ‘postponed’. This was her first opportunity after lockdown to travel and bring family and friends together for a big party.

To make the occasion even more special, Kriti had just got engaged to her partner, Jordan. This was their first trip together to the ancient city of Varanasi, also known as Benares, in the northern Indian state of Uttar Pradesh, where Kriti’s grandmother lives.

Kriti was able to walk and exercise soon after the injury, but she noticed some inflammation and soreness. So as soon as she landed in the UK, she went to her physiotherapist, Jonathan, to check it out. Jonathan had helped rehabilitate Kriti’s left knee after her last surgery, so he knew her history. Understanding the need for caution, Jonathan referred her straight to Mr Simon Thompson, consultant orthopaedic surgeon at The Lister Hospitalwho specialises in ACL and revision ACL surgery.

Simon Thompson.png

A shock diagnosis

A few days later, Kriti met Mr Thompson for the first time. Having examined Kriti’s right knee and reviewed her MRI, he gave her the news that she’d suffered a full ACL rupture. “I was shocked,” says Kriti, “I couldn’t believe I’d managed to tear my ACL with such a simple movement! And up until that point my right knee had been perfectly fine.”

Kriti had already suffered so many issues after her other left ACL reconstruction and subsequent surgeries held elsewhere, her previous surgery unfortunately had not worked and she was naturally concerned. Due to her severe instability Mr Thompson advised ACL reconstructive surgery to prevent further damage to the right. The good news was that her left knee problems could be rectified as well. The left knee would need revision surgery to finally repair the original damage and correct the previous, failed interventions.

The problem at this point was not only Kriti’s reluctance to have more surgery after her previous experiences. She had set the date for her wedding in Varanasi, India for January 2024 – less than nine months away.

“I really couldn’t face a long operation and recovery just before my wedding,” she says, “but Simon was adamant that if I don't have a good ACL on my right knee, it could really start to affect my quality of life.”

Kriti says she appreciated Mr Thompson’s willingness to really take the time to hear her concerns and answer her questions. “He was very honest about what I could expect in terms of rehabilitation, and he gave me lots of information and time to make a decision. Everything felt so transparent.”

Road to rehabilitation

In August 2023, Kriti had the first of three surgical interventions with Mr Thompson, starting with a full ACL reconstruction of her right knee to restore its function. “The recovery process was completely different to my previous experiences,” says Kriti. “There was no knee brace, I could weight bear, and there was hardly any pain. I was pretty shocked, to be honest, that it went so smoothly! I was on my feet and in the gym within two weeks and back to work in just six weeks.”

Kriti says what made a huge difference was the quality of aftercare she received from Mr Thompson and his team, who took the time to explain every detail of the recovery process. “No one else in my other surgeries had quite spelt out the process and my aftercare in my follow up appointments was really spot on and helped me follow Mr Thompsons’ rehabilitation programme which definitely helped to speed my recovery.”

After this smooth experience, Kriti felt confident to return to Mr Thompson for two corrective procedures on her left knee. With just months to go before her wedding, Kriti underwent surgery again – first to address previous issues and then, she returned for a full ACL reconstruction.

“I'm completely pain free now,” she says, “which is a lovely surprise!” Kriti’s family, particularly her mum and partner who had supported her through her previous surgeries, were understandably worried when they heard about Kriti’s plans to embark on more surgery… “they were like, ‘wow you've got less than a year before the wedding, how are you going to do this?’”

Kriti says everyone was happy to see how quickly she recovered and she laughs that she should have a loyalty card with Mr Thompson: “I’ve had a lot of surgery with different people. It’s so surprising – I expected everyone in this field to be the same, but they’re not. He really seems to have magic hands! His ACLs have all gone well, I start moving again really quickly, and the recovery is great. I’ve recommended him to all my relatives with knee problems!”

Find out more about the acute knee injury services available at HCA Healthcare or to book an appointment, call 020 3733 5966.

More patient stories

Yvette's story: From back pain to hip replacement surgery

Yvette's story: From back pain to hip replacement surgery

Yvette (54) a journalist from Kent, started experiencing pain in her hip seven years ago in 2015. An ex-national gymnast who had been incredibly active and flexible her whole life, Yvette felt concerned about the growing discomfort impacting her quality of life, and so sought help from her GP.

A new hip and straight back into the spin of things

A new hip and straight back into the spin of things

Michael's MAKO hip surgery to treat his arthritis

Michael's MAKO hip surgery to treat his arthritis

73 year-old Michael, an avid walker and charity worker, was diagnosed with arthritis in January 2021. After facing long waiting times and increasing pain that was becoming more frequent, he started to look elsewhere for treatment.

This content is intended for general information only and does not replace the need for personal advice from a qualified health professional.