A torn meniscus is one of the most common types of knee injuries that people suffer, whether or not they are athletes. If you are involved in any type of activity that causes you to rotate or twist your knee, you could be at risk. Here is some information on symptoms associated with this type of injury and treatments.
Torn Meniscus Symptoms
There are two menisci in each of your knees. These are pieces of cartilage shaped something like a “C” that cushion the area between your thighbone and your shinbone. When a torn meniscus occurs, it typically results in stiffness and swelling. In addition, you may not be able to fully extend your knee. If you notice any of the following, or you cannot move your knee as easily as normal, you should make an appointment with an orthopedic expert to get a proper diagnosis:
- Pain that occurs when you rotate or twist your knee
- Any sort of popping sensation
- Feeling as if your knee is locked in place
Torn Meniscus Treatments
More than likely, your doctor will first recommend a conservative course of treatment if you have suffered a torn meniscus. For example, the first line of treatment may simply be rest so that you avoid any types of activity that could lead to twisting of the knee. You may be on crutches for a while to help speed the healing of the injury. Or, your doctor may suggest using ice every 15 minutes or so for about 4-6 hours the first couple of days to reduce swelling and pain. Medication may also help reduce pain.
If those treatment methods do not work, then physical therapy may be used to help stabilize the joint and strengthen the muscles surrounding the knee. Shoe inserts and arch supports could also help decrease stress on the area by distributing force around your knee. If the knee remains locked, stiff, or painful, then surgery will likely be recommended.