Meniscus tear is probably one of the most common knee injuries, and it can be excruciating and debilitating. Here are some fast facts about the condition as well as its causes and treatment.
1. The meniscus is a piece of cartilage found at the top of the tibia bone of the knee. It protects the bones from the wear and tear of constant friction and cushions the joint, protecting it from the stress of bending, running, jumping, and walking.
2. A meniscus tear occurs when the knee is forcefully twisted, and the damage can be caused by a single event or a gradual degeneration as a result of age and overuse. Sometimes, a piece of the torn cartilage breaks loose and gets stuck in the knee joint, causing a restriction in movement.
3. Meniscus tears usually occur during athletic activities and sports like football, basketball, hockey, tennis, and golf, which require pivoting, running, and sudden stops. The motions of exercise, such as kneeling and squatting, can also cause meniscus tear injuries.
4. Other knee injuries often accompany meniscus tears, and older athletes or fitness enthusiasts are at a higher risk. This is because the meniscus weakens and loses its resilience with age, and as the blood supply to the knee cartilage decreases, so does the potential for recovery.
5. The treatment for meniscus tear varies depending on the location, severity, and other underlying factors such as a preexisting condition. Treatment options include anti-inflammatory medications, compression, physical therapy, braces, and surgery.
If you experience a popping sensation, pain, and swelling in your knee, be sure to consult your health practitioner for a thorough examination and diagnosis.
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