For such a tiny piece of the knee, a torn meniscus can be a major pain. Play it safe, though, because a small tear can grow. If you're an athlete, our orthopedic sports medicine doctors focus on how to get you back in the game.
The meniscus is a piece of rubbery cartilage. It is a shock absorber between the shin and thigh bones. These major bones carry a lot of force, leaving the meniscus at risk for tearing. Sports, a strong twist of the knee or even just daily use over years can cause the tear. Once torn, you may have pain, swelling, locking or clicking. A severe tear may require surgery.
Treatments for Torn Meniscus
Symptoms of a torn meniscus may feel better with non-surgical care, such as ice, medicine and muscle-strengthening exercises. Your recovery plan depends on the extent of your injury. Your doctor looks at your overall health and how you tolerate certain medicines. If surgery is your best option, minimally invasive (arthroscopic) surgery makes recovery faster.
If your torn meniscus goes untreated, there's an increased likelihood of knee instability, persistent pain and risk of osteoarthritis. Let our experts help you understand the pros and cons of each treatment option.