What is the Meniscus?
The meniscus, also known as the cartilage of the knee, is a strong fibrous crescent-shaped structure that is sandwiched between the femur (the thigh bone), and the tibia (the shin bone). There are two sections: the medial meniscus on the inside of the knee, and the lateral meniscus on the outside of the knee. Their main function is to provide stability to the knee and a level of shock absorption in the lower limbs.
What are the symptoms of a Meniscus tear?
Damage to the meniscus is one of the most common injuries in the knee joint. This is often due to a partial tear through either the medial or lateral section, frequently caused by a dynamic twisting movement through the knee leading to a shearing force through the joint. Common symptoms of such a tear include: pain on either the inner or outer aspect of the knee; minor swelling, which can often be delayed 24-48 hours after the injury first occurred; a locking of the knee whereby it gets truly ‘stuck’ and you are unable to bend or straighten it for a couple of seconds; and giving way, where the knee collapses underneath you when walking. It is, however, very common to experience only a couple of these symptoms, depending on the severity of the tear. For a very large tear, surgery may be required to repair it.
How can Mike Varney Physiotherapy treat Meniscus injuries?
At the clinic, we provide comprehensive treatment for meniscal tears. This includes advice regarding the PRICE principles (protection, rest, ice, compression and elevation), ultrasound, interferential therapy, acupuncture and Kinesio tape, along with an in-depth rehabilitation exercise programme for you to complete at home between therapy sessions. We generally recommend weekly treatments for meniscal tears, but these are often spaced out as the injury improves.
Well known athletes who have suffered with Meniscus tears:
Luis Suarez, Michael Owen and Michael Essien.