Knee Meniscus Surgery
Meniscus tear is a common knee injury in athletes, especially those involved in contact sports or activities involving twisting motions of the knee. A sudden bend or twist in your knee cause the meniscus to tear. This is a traumatic meniscus tear. Elderly people are more prone to degenerative meniscal tears as the cartilage wears out and weakens with age. The two wedge-shape cartilage pieces present between the thighbone and the shinbone are called meniscus. They stabilize the knee joint and act as "shock absorbers".
Torn meniscus causes pain, swelling, stiffness, catching or locking sensation in your knee making you unable to move your knee through its complete range of motion. Your orthopedic surgeon will examine your knee, evaluate your symptoms, and medical history before suggesting a treatment plan. The treatment depends on the type, size and location of tear as well your age and activity level. Certain meniscual injuries can be treated non surgically. This depends on the type of tear present, the age and functional activity level of the patient, the presence of associated arthritis of the knee, or the degree and type of symptoms present. In other situation, surgical treatment may be recommended.
Knee arthroscopy is the commonly recommended surgical procedure for meniscal tears. The surgical treatment options include meniscus removal (meniscectomy), meniscus repair, and meniscus replacement. Surgery can be performed using arthroscopy where a small camera will be inserted through an incision which enables the surgeon to view inside of your knee on a large screen and through other small incisions, surgery will be performed. During meniscectomy, small instruments called shavers or scissors may be used to remove portions of the torn meniscus or articular cartilage. In arthroscopic meniscus repair the torn meniscus will be sutured. Only certain types of meniscus tear can be effectively repaired with sutures. This depends on the pattern of the tear and the blood supply in certain areas of the meniscus.