WHAT IS IT? MENISCAL TEARS

Menisci protect the cartilage within your knee.  There is a medial meniscus and a lateral meniscus.  The medial meniscus is more prone to injury because it is fixed to the capsule within the knee joint.

The role of the meniscus is to act as a shock absorber, protect the underlying cartilage, and provide stability for the knee.

Signs & Symptoms

  • Feeling of tearing at time of injury

  • Pain

  • Swelling

  • Loss of bending and straightening movements of knee

  • Locking

  • Clicking

  • Clunking

  • Grinding

  • Tender joint line

  • Aggravated by squatting

What Causes It?

  • A meniscal tear can occur during sport when the knee is flexed then twisted.

  • Degeneration of the meniscus can also occur.

How to Self Manage

  • R.I.C.E. protocol

  • Depending on the severity, a meniscal tear can be managed conservatively or arthroscopically.

  • An assessment by your physiotherapist is recommended to gain assessment and possible referral if required.

Prognosis

Can resolve spontaneously, but if pain and restriction continues, medication and manual treatment would be of great benefit.

How Physio Helps

  • Joint mobilisation

  • Joint manipulation

  • Massage

  • Acupuncture

  • Manual traction

  • Prescription of exercises to address muscle tightness

  • Prescription of strengthening exercises to improve stability of the neck

  • Use electrical therapies including ultrasound

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