Top Signs Your Meniscus May Be in Trouble

More than 500,000 people in the United States develop a meniscus tear every year. Unlike other knee injuries, you may not realize you’ve injured your meniscus until several days after the injury.

Like any injury, early diagnosis and treatment increase your chances of a faster recovery. At Ani Medical Group in Hazlet and Old Bridge, New Jersey, our orthopaedic experts want you to know the top signs your meniscus may be in trouble so you can get the treatment you need without delay. 

About your meniscus

Your meniscus is a rubbery disc that cushions the three bones that make up your knee, including the thigh bone, kneecap, and shinbone. In addition to preventing the bones from rubbing against each other, your meniscus also helps distribute body weight and stress on your knee. 

What causes a meniscus injury

In many cases, injuries to the meniscus occur when you suddenly twist or turn your knee while keeping your foot planted in one position. 

Athletes are especially prone to meniscus injuries. However, you may also accidentally injure the rubbery tissue from an unexpected slip and fall. 

Aging also increases your risk of a meniscus injury. Like other parts of your body, your meniscus degenerates over time, making it more susceptible to tears. 

The severity of your meniscus injury

Our orthopaedic experts classify your meniscus injury based on the severity of the damage. The classification may play a role in the types of symptoms you experience and the treatment.

Mild

A mild meniscus injury causes minor discomfort and heals within 2-3 weeks with rest. 

Moderate

Moderate meniscus tears are more painful and may cause discomfort throughout your knee. 

With a moderate meniscus tear, you may notice swelling and discomfort within the first few days. These types of tears heal on their own but require activity modification. 

Severe

If your meniscus has a large tear, then your injury is considered severe. With a severe meniscus tear, you may struggle to bend or straighten your knee or walk. 

Your tear may also lead to loose bodies that cause your knee to lock or catch. 

If you have a severe meniscus tear, surgery is usually needed to repair the injury. 

Top signs your meniscus is in trouble

Like other soft tissue injuries, your meniscus injury may be categorized as an acute or overuse injury. 

Acute injuries are sudden, hard to prevent, and can happen to even the fittest of people.

It’s not uncommon for an acute knee injury to affect more than one part of your knee, making it hard to ignore. Any acute knee injury benefits from an evaluation, especially if you lead an active lifestyle. 

Overuse injuries develop over time from repetitive use. An overuse meniscus injury may start as a small tear and grow larger when left untreated. 

You may have a more difficult time recognizing an overuse meniscus injury before things get worse. Common signs that your meniscus may be in trouble include:

If you feel any of these symptoms, you should rest your knee for a few days. However, if your symptoms persist, you should come in for an evaluation.

Don’t let your knee pain keep you from living your life. Let us help you get back to it. If you suspect your meniscus is in trouble, contact the office by phone or request an appointment online today.

You Might Also Enjoy...

5 Stretching Tips to Avoid Injury

Exercise is part of any healthy lifestyle, but preparing your body for exercise is just as important. Whether you’re a professional athlete or a recreational sports hero, here are some techniques to protect your body and prepare you to perform.

How To Avoid Pulling a Muscle

If you’ve experienced a pulled muscle, you know the discomfort and pain it can bring. And chances are good you’d like to avoid this type of injury in the future. Keep reading for tips on how to avoid pulling a muscle.

What Every Woman Should Know About Osteoarthritis

Did you know that women are more likely than men to develop osteoarthritis? This is a condition that causes pain, aching, and stiffness, and negatively impacts your life. Here’s a look at what every woman should know!

Tips for Lifting Without Hurting Your Back

Does your back hurt and you’re not sure why? You may need to consider your lifting technique. Maybe poor form is to blame for your aches and pains. Here’s what you should know about back-friendly lifting.

Spotting the Warning Signs of a Herniated Disc

Herniated discs are a common cause of back pain. If you think you may have a herniated disc, it’s best to get checked out as soon as possible. Here are some of the warning signs to watch out for.

Why You Shouldn't Ignore Shin Splints

Shin splints are a common, sports-related problem that can often cause discomfort and interrupt your active lifestyle, which can be frustrating. Take a moment to learn why you shouldn't ignore this kind of pain.