Meniscus Tears and Treatment
Today, as the importance of increasing sports activities, exercises and increasing physical activity is understood and applied, knee injuries are more and more common in people of all ages. The knee joint is the largest joint in the body. The knee joint consists of 3 bones. The thigh (femur) bone above is the shin (tibia) bone below and the anterior part is the kneecap (patella). These are the knee joint ligaments (Ligaments) and the half-moon-shaped Menisci that provide the harmony of the joints.
Meniscus tears are the most common injuries of the knee that require surgery. Although meniscus tear is known as an athlete’s disease because it is frequently seen in athletes, meniscus tear, which occurs as a result of sudden rotational movements, traumas in the knee and accumulation of small blows to the knee in the elderly, can also be seen in people who have strained the knee in any way.
Today, these cases are becoming more and more common in children. The reason is that children take part in sports with tough competition such as football and basketball at an early age. Rupture cases are more common in individuals over the age of 30. Those with weak meniscus should avoid heavy contact sports.
The probability of meniscus tearing is much higher in patients with osteoarthritis (Calcification of the Knee). Osteoarthritis is the irreversible loss of articular cartilage and is the most common cause of stiffness and pain in the joints due to aging. Sudden movements by elderly people can cause ruptures due to their already weakened menisci.
Meniscus tear can cause various complaints such as swelling, pain, locking and movement restriction or fluid collection in the knee as a symptom, and difficulties in walking can also be seen as a general pain in the knee.
When a meniscus tear occurs
- Pain when the knee is touched
- Swelling in the knee area
- Difficulty or restriction in movement of the knee
- Knee locking or catching sensation
- A feeling that the knees cannot support the incoming pressure
- Pressing on the space felt in the knee and a feeling of insecurity in the joint may occur.
Symptoms differ according to age. Meniscus tear symptoms that a young athlete and an older person will experience may not be the same. When you are faced with such a situation, you should consult an orthopedic specialist. It should always be preferred that the present findings be evaluated by a physician experienced in meniscal surgery and knee arthroscopy.
Early diagnosis of meniscal tear is important. If the meniscus is torn for a long time and is not treated, stability (joint imbalance) problem may develop in the knee joint and cartilage damage or calcification may occur accordingly.
Diagnosis is made by x-ray, MR or arthroscopy. Arthroscopy surgery is important because of its possibility to diagnose and treat at the same time.
Pain relievers to relieve pain and swelling can be used in the early period in cases where non-surgical treatment is preferred, and physical therapy and muscle-strengthening exercises can also be used. Meniscus tears are the most common injuries of the knee that require surgery. Often in the treatment of meniscus tears, the torn part is removed, but in suitable patients, the tear is tried to be sutured if possible. Meniscus surgery is performed with the help of a device called arthroscopy. Thanks to this method, the structures inside the knee can be fully seen and the meniscus tear can be removed by preserving the intact part as much as possible. Since the scar is small and can be done without damaging the knee, the healing process is quite fast. Patients get up on the same day and can be discharged the next day and return to their daily lives in a very short time.
orthopedics and Traumatology specialist