Diagnosis: The meniscus is a piece of cartilage that cushions the knee. It lies between the thigh bone (femur) and the shin bone (tibia) and acts as a shock absorber as well as providing stability to the knee.
Causes: A torn meniscus is usually caused by a forceful twisting or pivoting of the knee with the foot planted on the ground. It is common in those who play contact sports, but can also occur with kneeling, deep squatting or heavy lifting.
Symptoms: The most common symptom with a torn meniscus is pain when twisting or turning. Most people will hear or feel a pop at the time of injury. Other symptoms include:
- Swelling during the first 24 hours after injury
- Difficulty straightening the knee
- “Catching” sensation
- Stiffness or locking of the knee
Our Physical Therapy Treatment: Goals of physical therapy will be to reduce pain and swelling and restore normal motion of the knee. Treatment will focus on:
- Mechanical diagnosis and treatment for pain reduction
- Strength and flexibility exercises
- Balance and stability
- Return to sport and functional activity training
Treatment will focus on educating the patient on how to manage symptoms independently and establishing a home exercise program to assist in their recovery.