Meniscus tears are among the most common knee injuries, particularly in those who play contact sports. The menisci are two wedge-shaped pieces of fibrocartilage that act as shock absorbers between the femur and tibia, essential in transmitting the weight from one bone to another and stabilizing the knee. Acute trauma or degenerative changes over time can cause meniscus tears.
The most common symptoms of a meniscus tear are:
Stiffness and swelling
Catching or locking of your knee
Having a sensation of the knee giving out
Inability to move the knee through its full range of motion
Doctors usually recommend the R-I-C-E protocol, which stands for rest, ice, compression and elevation, as an initial treatment for meniscus injuries. Other nonsurgical treatment options include NSAIDs, steroid injections and biologics injections, such as platelet-rich plasma.
If symptoms persist despite conservative treatments, your doctor may recommend arthroscopic surgery, a common surgical procedure to trim or repair meniscus tears.