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Meniscal injuries - Injury Snapshots

The meniscus is a crucial component of the knee joint, acting as a shock absorber during weight-bearing activities. It is a rubbery cartilage that cushions the joint and protects the femur (thighbone), tibia (shinbone), and patella (kneecap) surfaces from damage.

How do Meniscal injuries occur?

Meniscus injuries can occur due to sudden trauma or gradual degeneration.

Younger people are more prone to acute meniscus injuries resulting from sports-related incidents that involve twisting or sudden deceleration of the knee.

Conversely, older individuals are more likely to suffer from chronic meniscus injuries that develop over time due to age-related wear and tear on the joint.

What are common symptoms?

Common symptoms of meniscus injuries include clicking, locking, and pain in the affected knee. Some individuals may also report 'giving way',

How do I fix it?

In most cases, conservative management, such as targeted exercise therapy, can be highly effective in treating meniscus injuries. By improving lower limb strength and mechanics, patients can reduce symptoms and facilitate healing without the need for surgery.

However, surgery may be necessary in cases of chronic pain, locked knee, or when conservative management fails to improve symptoms after six months. The goal of surgery is to preserve as much of the meniscus as possible and maintain the joint's protective function.

Take home

Acute meniscus injuries:

  • Common in the sporting population

  • Involves a twist with the foot anchored

Chronic meniscus injuries:

  • Occur in the older athlete

  • Due to degenerative changes

The aim of surgery is to preserve as much of the meniscus as possible - it has an important role in protecting the knee joint surfaces!

At Marna Physiotherapy, our team of experts specializes in treating meniscus injuries using a tailored, progressive strengthening exercise program. If you are experiencing knee pain, clicking, or locking, contact us today to start your rehab journey and get back to doing what you love!

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