A meniscus tear is a common knee injury occurring in the cartilage cushioning the shinbone from the thighbone. The cushion provided by the meniscus is a rubbery, C-shaped disc that can be torn with forceful twisting or rotation of the knee. Each knee has two menisci – on at the outer edge of the knee – the other at the knee’s inner edge. The menisci stabilize the knee by balancing the body’s weight. When torn, the knee is prevented from working properly and weight becomes imbalanced across the knees.
Causes of a Meniscal Tear
A meniscus tear is typically caused by sudden twisting or pivoting movements, while keeping the feet firmly planted in one spot as the knee is bent awkwardly. This is known as torsion – intensely pivoting while holding the feet in a solid position – which places great strain on the knee. A tear to a meniscus can also occur by lifting heavy objects. As one ages, the meniscus becomes worn and is susceptible to easy tears.
Types of Meniscal Tears
There are three (3) types of tears that can occur to the meniscus:
- Longitudinal Tear
- Oblique Tear
- Radial Tear
Grades of Meniscal Tears
- Minor – Mild pain and swelling of the knee lasting for approximately 2 to 3 weeks
- Moderate – Sharp pain at the center or side of the knee accompanied by stiffness and swelling for approximately 2 to 3 weeks
- Severe – Substantial pain after a popping sound (the actual tearing of the meniscus) accompanied by swelling and stiffness plus the inability to straighten the leg – locking of the knee.
Multidisciplinary Diagnosis and Treatment for Meniscus Tear
If you believe you may have a meniscus tear, Spine and Sports Medicine Medical Director, Dr. Brian Kessler, advises you to seek immediate Sports Medicine Treatment and refrain from moving the knee after the injury.
- Physical Therapy
- Temporary Knee Brace
Accurate Diagnosis of Meniscus Tear
Only a licensed Doctor of Physical Therapy has the ability to diagnose and treat a meniscus tear to the knee. If the meniscus tear is not diagnosed properly, the best physical therapy treatment or surgery will be worthless.
A thorough diagnosis requires:
- Expert physical examination of the knee
- Analysis of the patient’s medical history
- Explanation and assessment of the circumstances surrounding the cause of the injury
For serious meniscus tears, an X-Ray or MRI is likely to be ordered and a referral to an orthopedist will be made. This is especially true when the patient does not seek immediate medical after the injury and additional damage has been sustained due to harmful movement of the knee.
Pre and Post Meniscus Tear Surgery Therapy Rehabilitation
The Multidisciplinary Therapeutic Treatment Team at Spine and Sports Medicine have the specialization to stabilize and rehabilitate your torn meniscus pre- and post-surgery. Extensive physical therapy will be essential both before and after meniscus tear orthopedic surgery for one’s injury to heal properly and avoid degenerative arthritis from developing. Without physical therapy, meniscus tears remain very painful and may never heal naturally because – with this injury – time and rest do not help. The sooner a physical therapy program is started, the quicker the knee will heal and pain will be alleviated.
Superior Physical Therapy Treatment for a Meniscus Tear
The Multidisciplinary Team of Physical Therapy Experts at Spine and Sports Medicine have the education and practical experience to make an informed meniscus tear diagnosis. Through a personalized physical therapy plan, they will guide you through a comprehensive rehabilitation program to get you back on track toward a pain free life.
Medical Insurance Coverage for Diagnosis and Treatment
At Spine and Sports Medicine, there is no requirement for you to obtain an outside primary physician referral for insurance coverage. Most insurance plans cover the cost of diagnosing and treating meniscus tear injuries. Our insurance experts will help you to determine your coverage and assist in processing your claims.
Discover Multidisciplinary Therapeutic Meniscus Tear Treatment in One Convenient Location
If you have experienced a meniscus tear – and have been delaying seeking treatment for your pain and discomfort – reach out to the Multidisciplinary Team of Physical Therapy Experts at Spine and Sports Medicine by clicking below or calling 212.986.3888. Remember – delaying treatment will only worsen your injury. Discover pain relief for your knee through the benefits of a multidisciplinary therapeutic practice in one convenient Midtown Manhattan location – at Madison Avenue and 40th Street.