Meniscal tears are among one of the most common knee injuries of Athletes. Particularly those who play contact sports, are at risk for meniscal tears.
Cause & Symptoms
Sudden meniscal tears often happen during sports. Players may squat and twist the knee, causing a tear. Direct contact, like a tackle, is sometimes involved.
You might feel a “pop” when you tear a meniscus. Most people can still walk on their injured knee. Many athletes keep playing with a tear. Over 2 to 3 days, your knee will gradually become more stiff and swollen.
The most common symptoms of meniscal tear are:
Stiffness and swelling
Catching or locking of your knee
The sensation of your knee “giving way”
You are not able to move your knee through its full range of motion
Without treatment, a piece of meniscus may come loose and drift into the joint. This can cause your knee to slip, pop, or lock.
Physical Examination and Patient History
After discussing your symptoms and medical history, your doctor will examine your knee. He or she will check for tenderness along the joint line where the meniscus sits. This often signals a tear.
One of the main tests for meniscal tears is the McMurray test. Your doctor will bend your knee, then straighten and rotate it. This puts tension on a torn meniscus. If you have a meniscal tear, this movement will cause a clicking sound. Your knee will click each time your doctor does the test.
Because other knee problems cause similar symptoms, your doctor may order imaging tests to help confirm the diagnosis.
X-rays. Although x-rays do not show meniscal tears, they may show other causes of knee pain, such as osteoarthritis.
Magnetic resonance imaging (MRI). This study can create better images of the soft tissues of your knee joint, like a meniscus.
Great Lakes Physical Therapy
|The Physical Therapy team at Great Lakes Orthopedics offer a wide range of programs and specialized services to help our patients restore and maintain their physical strength, performance skills, and levels of function. Our well-trained, professional staff utilize the most progressive treatment options and techniques to ensure the best possible recoveries.|