Meniscal tears are one of the most frequently occurring injuries of the knee. They are very common in people who play contact sports, but anyone can be afflicted. The meniscus are two rubbery pieces of cartilage in-between where the thighbone and the shinbone meet in the knee. They act as shock absorbers and keep the joint stable. There are many different types of meniscal tears, but it is important to remember that they can happen to almost anyone.
Generally, instantaneous tears happen in athletes. This can happen after twisting a knee or being tackled in a contact sport. Degenerative meniscal tears are more common in senior citizens. The cartilage can deteriorate over time and be more prone to a tear. Almost any sudden shock to the joint can cause the meniscus to tear if they have deteriorated enough.
There are many, often overlooked, symptoms of a torn meniscus. Pain and swelling in the knee, the knee locking or giving way, or a loss of a full range of motion are all symptoms of a torn meniscus. If left untreated, the joint can get worse over time, causing popping, slipping, or locking in the knee, which is why it is crucial to see a physical therapist immediately. Depending on the severity of the tear, an expert can recommend several routes of treatment. The RICE method, or rest, ice, compression, elevation method is among the most common for sports injuries. They might also recommend anti-inflammatories, such as aspirin and ibuprofen. If surgery is necessary, then there are several options. Either the torn tissue is stitched together, or it is cut away. Rehabilitation times may vary, but can take up to three months.
Above all, it is important to remember to never overlook an injury. The earlier it can be treated, the better, as it can only get worse on its own. Call a physical therapist today!
Did you know that you have Direct Access to Physical Therapy? No referral is needed. We offer the best Physical Therapy on Long Island where you can get help from our trusted and expert Physical Therapists. We have several locations on Long Island including Massapequa, Valley Stream, Wantagh and Lindenhurst. To start your Physical Therapy evaluation, call Park Physical Therapy and The Physical Therapy Alliance at (516) 568-4444.