What is the meniscus? How is the meniscus treated? Will the meniscus heal on its own?

What is the meniscus? How to treat the meniscus? Will the meniscus heal on its own?
What is the meniscus? How to treat the meniscus? Will the meniscus heal on its own?

Physical therapy and rehabilitation specialist Prof. Dr. Turan Uslu gave information on the subject. The meniscus is a cartilaginous tissue that acts as a shock absorber between the two bones of the knee. Often damaged by twist-style strains. This damage causes pain and swelling in the knee. As a result of the damage, the part detached from the meniscus or its severely damaged structure may cause locking in the knee. Since the cartilage does not have blood circulation, it is not possible to repair the damage by the body. In the light of the information and decision given by a specialist physician, it is possible to repair the meniscus arthroscopically. In some damages, a part of the meniscus or the whole may need to be removed. Hyaluronic acid injections and PRP give good results in patients with first and second degree meniscus lesions.

Meniscal lesions in patients over the age of 48 are usually associated with degenerative changes. The incidence of osteoarthritic problems in later life is high in patients whose meniscus has been completely removed. Rehabilitation following arthroscopic meniscus intervention is important for early return to sports. Load bearing on the leg using crutches is allowed within 4 hours after arthroscopy. A bike (fixed home or lab style) can be used within a few days. It is returned in 6-XNUMX weeks following the rehabilitation suitable for pre-surgical sports activities. This process can be prolonged in complex repairs.

Will the meniscus heal on its own?

In the treatment of meniscus tears, surgery or a combination method of "medicine-exercise-rest" should be applied. Closed surgery method called arthroscopy should be preferred directly for tears with mechanical signs such as snagging and locking detected by MRI. If the patient has a low-grade tear that is not fully detached, the patient's complaints are treated with medications and special exercises to be given by the doctor. If the complaints do not decrease after applying the exercise method for at least 1,5 months, the surgical method can be applied.

Arthroscopy period in surgery

After the meniscus diagnosis, treatment should be started without delay. Meniscus tear is diagnosed by an orthopedist's examination and subsequent MRI. While open surgery was used in the treatment of meniscus before, nowadays, closed surgeries, which are a modern treatment method, are performed, namely arthroscopy. An optical system (camera) with an approximate diameter of 5 mm is entered into the knee joint. The image of the inside of the knee is projected on the screen and the ligament and other structures inside the knee are examined. In most meniscus tears, removing the tear is sufficient for treatment.

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