How’s That Meniscus?

One of the most common knee injuries that we see in clinic are torn meniscus injuries. The agility that athletes have on the court, the field, or the ice, can be one of their greatest talents. The ability to swerve, reverse, sprint, jump, and dunk is their strategy to confuse their opponents however, one wrong move could cause significant damage. Although athletes in contact sports are more at risk for this type of injury, anyone can present with a torn meniscus regardless of age or activity. Wear and tear can result in meniscal injuries as well.

The knee joint is a “well made joint” in the human body. It is typically a tough and strong joint that can withstand a significant amount of force. The meniscus is the knee’s shock absorber and is a C shaped cartilage that rests in the surface of the tibial plateau and houses the femur. There are 2 meniscus wedges in each knee.

Damage to the meniscus will commonly result in:

  • A “pop” at the time of injury.
  • Pain in the knee joint may be persistent or may come and go and may increase in intensity when pressure is put on the joint.
  • Feelings of swelling, fullness and/or stiffness.
  • A feeling that the knee locking, clicking, or giving way.

Untreated meniscal tears may result in the torn portion of the cartilage coming loose and floating into the joint, an increase in the size of the tear or further complications which may require surgical intervention to restore the function of the knee.

Physiotherapy treatment early on can help alleviate your pain, restore your range of motion, as well as your strength, your stability, and your control. Your rehab program will focus on the knee itself as well as the muscles, tendons and ligaments that surround the injured area and will incorporate stretching, stretching, gait training, balance and agility training, and sport specific training. You will heal under the guidance of one of our Registered Physiotherapists and will be supported through your journey!

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