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4 Factors that determine whether You’re a Candidate for Meniscal Tear Surgery

01-25-2018 02:58 PM CET | Health & Medicine

Press release from: Phoenix Shoulder & Knee

The knee joint cartilage can take a lot of wear but still sometimes vulnerable to damage or injury. A specialized cartilage, the meniscus, protects the knee joint. When the meniscus tears, it can be treated non-surgically in some cases, but other cases require surgery.

When it comes to meniscal tear, your orthopedic surgeon will evaluate the meniscal tear and determine whether it needs surgery or not.

If you have been diagnosed with a torn meniscus and considering meniscus repair surgery, here are some factors to consider.

Size of the tear

Meniscus tears smaller than 5 mm in size, in younger patients, have a good chance of healing on their own. Your doctor may recommend orthopedic bracing, instead of surgery, for a few weeks to keep the knee immobile and undergo some physical therapy.

Location of the tear

The location of the tear can affect whether or not a surgical repair will work. For example, tears toward the outside of the C-shaped meniscus are likely to heal better because there are more blood vessels there.

The menisci come in pairs, a lateral (outer) and a medial (inner) meniscus. The outer meniscus is difficult to access due to tendons and other soft tissues present.

Type of the tear

The shape of the tear can also affect the decision to consider surgery. A longitudinal tear (the tear is inside the meniscus with the outer layer intact) is easier to repair than a radial tear (the tear is across the meniscus).

Cause for the tear

A meniscus tear that occurs due to a sudden injury is likely to have a cleaner, more “repairable” meniscus edges as compared to a tear caused due to gradual wear and tear, in which the meniscus may be ragged.

Surgeons can either repair the meniscus or remove a piece of damaged cartilage. This is known as a meniscectomy. If the patient with the meniscus tear is young and active, the surgeon would perform a repair rather than a meniscectomy.

For patients with no symptoms, no formal treatment is necessary. For patients with pain and/or functional limitations, minimally invasive arthroscopic surgery of the knee is often recommended. Dr. Adam Farber at Phoenix and Shoulder and Knee Clinic in Phoenix, performs meniscal surgery using the latest cutting-edge minimally invasive arthroscopic techniques.

Consult an experienced orthopedic surgeon, if you have persistent knee pain or any questions about treating your meniscus tear. Every patient is unique, and you and your doctor can determine the right treatment plan for you.

To learn more about knee arthritis and other knee treatments in Phoenix, call one of the best orthopedic surgeons in Phoenix AZ at Phoenix Shoulder and Knee at 480-219-3342.

Phoenix Shoulder & Knee
1215 W Rio Salado Parkway
Suite 105, Tempe, AZ 85281

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