Do you have a torn meniscus?
A torn meniscus is damage from a tear in the cartilage that is positioned on top of the tibia (shin bone) to allow the femur to glide when the knee joint moves. The better the blood supply, the better the potential for recovery. The outside rim of cartilage has a better blood supply than the central part of the “C.” Blood supply to knee cartilage also decreases with age, and up to 20% of normal blood supply is lost by age 40.
A forceful twist or sudden stop can cause the end of the femur to grind into the top of the tibia, pinching and potentially tearing the cartilage of the meniscus. This knee injury can also occur with deep squatting or kneeling, especially when lifting a heavyweight. Meniscus tear injuries often occur during athletic activities, especially in contact sports like football and hockey. Motions that require pivoting and sudden stops, in sports like tennis, basketball, and golf, can also cause meniscus damage.
Very often, meniscal tears do not cause symptoms or problems. However, some people with a torn meniscus know exactly when they hurt their knee. Symptoms may develop over time and may include any or all of the following:
* Pain with running or walking longer distances
* Intermittent swelling of the knee joint: Many times, the knee with a torn meniscus feels “tight.”
* Popping, especially when climbing up or downstairs
* Feeling weak and unstable. Less commonly, the knee actually will give way and cause the patient to fall.
* Locking: This occurs when a piece of torn meniscus folds on itself and blocks the full range of motion of the knee joint. The knee gets “stuck,” usually flexed between 15 and 30 degrees and cannot bend or straighten from that position.
Feel free to call us at Rainham Physiotherapy Centre on 01634 377638 to book in for a consultation if you feel you may be suffering from this condition or on any issues you may have.