Each knee has two menisci that are rubbery, c-shaped cushions that act as shock absorbers for the knee joints. A meniscus repair surgery is performed when the meniscus gets torn or injured. Meniscus injuries are common among athletes. A sudden twist or turn or a high impact collision can tear the meniscus. Even people in their old age can have a meniscus tear, as they get weaker and more vulnerable to injuries with time.
The doctor might order some tests, like blood tests, ECG (electrocardiogram), and a chest X-ray to assess your health status, and if you’re fit for surgery. A person from the anaesthesia team will determine the type of anaesthesia that you will receive for the surgery. The doctor might prescribe certain medications that will help you with the pain, suggest physical therapy, and also instruct what to do before surgery, such as what medications you should not be taking and if you can eat or drink before surgery.
The procedure used for a meniscus tear is a knee arthroscopy. The patient is put under anaesthesia and then the surgery begins. The surgeon inserts a small tool into an incision on the knee to assess the tear and decide the kind of surgery required to treat the tear.
The two types of technique are:
- Meniscus Repair – The surgeon sews up the torn meniscus and lets it heal on its own. The tear type and the blood supply are the factors that determine if the tear can heal on its own.
- Partial Meniscectomy – The surgeon cuts out the damaged cartilage and leaves the healthy meniscus in its place.
The recovery post-surgery depends on the technique used to treat the tear. A partial meniscectomy requires a longer period of time to recover from. The recovery time for a meniscus repair surgery can range anywhere from six weeks to three months.
Post-surgery care will include measures like crutches to prevent the knee from bearing weight, knee braces to stabilize the knee and keep it straight, medications to help with the pain, physical therapy, rehabilitation exercises to help strengthen the knee and regain range of motion and also the RICE method.
Call us today for a consultation. Our very own specialist, Dr Debashish Chanda is at your service to assist you.