Meniscus is a disc-shaped cushion that keeps the surfaces of bones at the knee joints from coming in contact with or rubbing against each other. The meniscus keeps the knee joint stable and helps in movement as well as maintaining balance.
When the meniscus is damaged, it can make even daily movements painful or even cause the knee joints to lock up.
Meniscus repairs have become more successful with the development of newer tools and advanced technology.
Each knee has two menisci and they can be torn due to some form of twisting or excessive knee bending. The meniscus may get torn due to –
- lifting something heavy
- squatting down
- playing basketball
- stepping off a curb
- aging and having arthritic damage
Large tears can cause the knee to lock up. Meniscus damage can cause knee pain and swelling due to the irritation to the joint from the unstable meniscus tissue or the excess stress to the joint from the loss of the cushioning.
Most meniscus tears do not require surgery. There are a variety of treatment options that can be effective in reducing symptoms.
Your orthopedic surgeon would determine the need for and viability of a meniscus repair for you.
After surgery, physical therapy is needed to retsore range of motion, reduce swelling and regain muscle function. After 4-6 weeks, weight bearing is gradually initiated, and a normal gait is the next goal.