The meniscus is a commonly injured structure in the knee.The meniscus are cartilage rings found on both the inside and outside of the knee.They sit between the femur(thigh bone) and tibia(shin bone) and act as a shock absorber in the knee.In addition,they provide some stability to the joint.
Acute meniscal injuries occur when the knee is suddenly twisted and forced forward into a bent position whilst the foot is still in contact with the floor.A portion of the meniscus can be torn by this combination of twisting and compression forces on the knee.these injuries are seen commonly in sports that involve twisting and turning.The menisci can also develop degenerative tears and it is common in older patients.
Acute meniscal injuries usually result in immediate pain followed by a gradual buildup of swelling in the knee and limited movement. sometimes the knee can also lock in a position if a part of the meniscus gets trapped within the joint.degenerative tears may present with similar symptoms to an acute injury,although on occasions patients may only experience pain without noticeable swelling or movement restrictions in the knee.
Many time the diagnosis of a meniscus tear can be made through the physical examinations. However, MRI can be helpful to confirm the tear and rule out any other injuries to the knee.
A set of X-rays may be ordered to evaluate the knee for arthritis or a fracture of the bones.even if the MRI was already performed,the X-rays are usually necessary for a complete evaluation.
Initial treatment for a torn meniscus focuses on decreasing pain and swelling in the knee. Rest and anti-inflammatory medications, can help decrease these symptoms. You may need to use crutches until you can walk without a limp. Some patients may receive physical therapy. Therapists treats swelling and pain with the use of ice,electrical stimulation and rest periods with your leg supported in elevation. Exercises are used to help you regain normal movement of joints and muscles.
CORTISONE INJECTION to resolve the pain and swelling.
Whether or not you are a good candidate for a conservative treatment will depend on the type of tear,age of the tear,and your activity level.
If your symptoms do not resolve,then you may require SURGICAL TREATMENT.
Rehabilitation proceeds cautiously after surgery on the meniscus and treatments will vary depending on whether you had part of the meniscus taken out or your surgeon repaired or replaced your meniscus. Patients are strongly advised to follow the recommendations about how much weight can be borne while standing or walking. After a partial meniscectomy,your surgeon may instruct you to place a comfortable amount of weight on your operated leg using a walking aid. After a meniscal repair,however,patients may be instructed to keep their knee straight in a locked knee brace and to put only minimal or no weight on their foot when standing or walking for upto six weeks.
Good control and no pain with sport specific movements,including impact.