A meniscus tear in the knee is a very common knee injury. Athletes and people performing rigorous physical activities that require overuse of the knee are at high risk of a meniscus tear. Meniscus tear injury can be very painful and debilitating. In some cases, the piece of the shredded cartilage breaks loose and catches within the knee joint; this can cause the knee joint to lock up. Meniscus tears are a special risk in older athletes where the cartilage is already weak.
What Does a Meniscus Tear Feel Like?
A meniscus tear in the knee can happen suddenly by strong unprecedented knee movements, or the wear and tear in the menisci can develop over time, leading to Meniscus tear.
When it happens, however, the pain may not be that bad. You might even be able to continue your physical activity. Once the inflammation starts, the knee starts hurting really bad.
When a meniscus tear occurs, you may even hear a popping sound in your knee. Some people also experience slipping and popping sensation, which is an indicator of a loose cartilage piece that is blocking the knee joint.
Meniscus Tear Symptoms
- Pain and Swelling in the knee.
- A popping sensation during the injury.
- Problems with bending and straightening the leg.
- A sensation that your knee is stuck or locked.
- Aggravated pain when touching.
- Compromised range of motion of the knee.
- A feeling that your knee is giving away and not able to support you.
Meniscus Tear Treatment
Grade 1 and grade 2 meniscus tears are usually managed with the help of rest combined with physical therapy and compression therapy. In a Grade 3 lateral or medial meniscus tear, surgical treatment is considered.
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How Do I Know If I Tore My Meniscus?
Some of the common symptoms associated with meniscus tear include:
- A pop-up sound.
- Inflammation or stiffness around the knee.
- Sharp pain while moving or twisting the knee.
- Inability or difficulty in extending the leg.
Can a Meniscus Tear Heal on Its Own?
- If you are suffering from meniscus tear at the outer one-third side of the knee, then it may sometimes heal on its own.
- It may sometimes require surgical treatment if tissue regeneration has stopped drastically.
Can You Walk Around With a Torn Meniscus?
- You may face severe localized pain in the knee in case of a torn meniscus.
- You’ll feel difficulty in bending or twisting your legs.
- But many people feel easy while walking, sitting, or standing with a torn meniscus.
How Long Does It Take for a Torn Meniscus to Heal Without Surgery?
- Your specialist may ask you to avoid all kinds of sports activities.
- Normally the torn meniscus heals on its own in a period of about 4-8 weeks.