Sunday, September 7, 2014

Meniscus Tear

Meniscus Tear : Not Just a Jock's Injury! This is my personal experience with a meniscus tear to my left knee. In the knee, it is a common site of injury! Yes, a meniscus tear is not just a jock's injury! It is a common site of injury which is often seen in contact sports but it also affects the common man. Like you and me!

left knee meniscus tear repair
A meniscus is either of two specific parts of cartilage of the knee. The knee contains a lateral meniscus and a medial meniscus.

Did you know that the medial meniscus is more commonly affected than the lateral meniscus?

Have you had knee pain? Do you think you have a meniscus tear? How do you know if you have such a tear?

P.S. It is pretty cool to see that the picture of my knee post-arthroscopy has been featured on page 1 of both Google web searches and image searches -- thanks for the love, Google! I think Google rocks!

Photo Credit: Meniscus tear repair surgery on JaguarJulie's left knee.

Cast your vote on Meniscus Tear!
Have you ever experienced this painful condition? Have you had a meniscus tear?
  1. Yes -- I had surgery
  2. Yes -- no treatment
  3. Maybe, don't know yet
  4. Nope -- I'm lucky, I guess!

Post-op 6 months after Meniscus Tear surgery ~ Left knee

I had arthroscopy in July 2007 to repair a torn medial meniscus. These may run in the family ... It appears as though the tendency to have these tears may indeed be in the genes. My mother has experienced similar issues, but actually had her meniscus removed!

Post-op 6 months after Meniscus Tear surgery ~ Left knee

Symptoms of Meniscus Tear
  1. Knee pain.
  2. Swelling of the knee.
  3. Tenderness when pressing on the meniscus.
  4. Popping or clicking within the knee.
  5. Limited motion of the knee joint.
Diagnosing a Meniscus Tear

The pain is quite specific! In osteoarthritis, the meniscus is either torn or worn away from overuse, age, or injury. The joint will be in pain when in use, but when there is no load, the pain goes away.

A torn meniscus can be repaired through some surgery and the body's ability to heal itself. In addition, there are techniques under research which involve sutures and biological glues to enable healing. If the tear is far away from the meniscus' blood supply (the meniscus becomes avascular towards the unattached, thin interior edge), then repair is unlikely.
Capsule of right knee-joint (distended) Posterior aspect -- Grays Anatomy
In these cases arthroscopic surgery allows for a meniscectomy, removing the torn tissue and allowing the knee to function with some of the meniscus missing. Usually younger patients are more resilient and react well to this treatment, while older, more sedentary patients do not have such rejuvenating ability.

In situations where the meniscus is torn beyond repair or partial removal, a total menisectomy and meniscus replacement may be the only option before a total knee replacement.

In sports and orthopedics, people will sometimes speak of "meniscus surgery" and a "torn meniscus" and be referring to an injury to one of the menisci. Tears in the meniscus may be assessed and measured via a minimally invasive test called meniscometry.

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  1. X-rays and MRIs are the two tests commonly used in patients who have meniscus tears.
  2. An x-ray can be used to determine if there is evidence of degenerative or arthritic changes to the knee joint.
  3. The MRI is helpful at actually visualizing the meniscus.
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Meniscus Repair FAQs
  1. In order for the meniscus repair to heal, the tear must be near this outer edge in an area of good blood supply.
  2. Arthroscopically placed tacks can be used, or the torn edges can be sutured or sometimes trimmed.
  3. Both procedures function by reapproximating the torn edges of the meniscus to allow them to heal in their proper place.
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Meniscus Tear Physical Rehabilitation
My PT involved 4 weeks of 3 visits per week. Although PT was scheduled for the following week after arthroscopy, I waited an additional week to get started.

Portable Dual Channel Tens Unit
Managing My Knee Pain

I have found that my knee pain has been a lot more manageable than the shoulder and hip pain that I have experienced throughout my life.

I've gotten to know a lot about heat patches and my Tens Unit. I've surely used more than one person's share of ThermaCare Lower Back & Hip Heat Wraps throughout my life.

For the most part, ice packs weren't all that friendly to my body parts. I'd experience a lot of muscle cramps, particularly with my shoulder injury.

Thanks for visiting!
Have you or someone you know torn a meniscus? Had or contemplating surgery? I'd love to hear from you.

History: Meniscus Tear : Not Just a Jock's Injury was originally created on Squidoo by JaguarJulie on December 25, 2007. Highest lensrank ever achieved: #62 overall. This was a top lens with 14 days on the Top 100 list. Lens #222 in the quest for Giant Squid 300 Club.

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