Our knees are extremely complex and subject to extreme stress on a daily basis so they can suffer from a variety of conditions – all of which are treatable if diagnosed correctly.
Meniscal tears can either result due to sporting injuries or due to wear and tear in the menisci which makes them soft. Meniscal tears cause pain and clicking in the knee. They can also cause mild instability and a severe tear can cause the knee to lock.
The tears are assessed by thorough clinical examination utilising special tests. MRI scanning confirms the diagnosis and further delineates the severity of the tear. In certain cases with a very high index of clinical suspicion, arthroscopy is used for both diagnosis and treatment.
Some meniscal tears are amenable to non-surgical treatment and resolve with physiotherapy and modified activity. If the tears are complex, they require surgical intervention in the form of arthroscopy (keyhole surgery). They are treated by either repairing the meniscus or resecting the torn edges (partial meniscectomy). If a repair is carried out, the patient may have restrictions on weight bearing. The surgery is followed by brief outpatient physiotherapy.