Meniscus tears – what are they?

It can be incredibly painful and frustrating to tear your meniscus – especially if you’re an active individual who enjoys playing energetic or high contact sports.

However, there are ways to fix meniscus tears and you should always act as quickly as possible to avoid the injury becoming any worse.

If you have torn your meniscus, the chances are that you will need to have knee surgery.

What is a Meniscus Tear?

These are the most common type of knee injuries. A meniscus is a piece of cartilage that is positioned on the top of a bone.

Meniscus Tears are most common in the knee where the menisci are located on top of the tibia bone.

How do Meniscus Tear?

Menisci can tear in a number of ways. They appear differently on different people and can occur in different areas of the meniscus. Some common tears include;

  • Bucket handle
  • Flap
  • Radial

Meniscus tears can also occur in combination with other injuries such as ACL tears.

Causes of Meniscus Tears

It is usually through sports that sudden and unexpected meniscus tears occur. They can happen when individuals squat, change direction or twist their knee – resulting in a tear. In sports such as rugby, direct contact can also cause tears.

However it’s not just active sports players who can suffer from meniscus tears. Older people experience weakening cartilage which has become thin over time and eventually tears – this is called a degenerative meniscus tear.

Symptoms of a Miniscus Tear

Meniscus tears can be very uncomfortable and you may experience some of the following symptoms:

  • Stiffness and swelling
  • Catching or locking of your knee
  • Feeling like your knee is “giving way”
  • Reduced range of motion in the knee

Non Surgical Treatment

The most effective treatment for meniscus tears is often to follow the RICE Procedure.

  1. Rest
  2. Ice
  3. Compression
  4. Elevation

Unfortunately, tears of the meniscus in the knee is one of the most common sports injury. Hopefully you can avoid these types of injuries and stay fit and healthy!

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