The knee joint is lined with a tough U shaped piece of cartilage called a meniscus. It is situated between the femur and tibia and provides cushioning and shock absorption during knee movements. The meniscus also physically contributes to the stability of the knee joint. More specifically, it can be referred to as the medial meniscus (inner knee) or lateral meniscus (outer knee).
Tears of the meniscus can be acute, such as with trauma or sports injuries, or chronic in nature, as with age related wear and tear. Small meniscus tears are often successfully treated with conservative measures, such as physical therapy.
- Pain and swelling
- Locking or giving out of knee
PHYSICAL THERAPY FOR MENISCAL TEAR
Physical therapy will initially focus on restoring range of motion and reducing swelling in the knee joint. Your physical therapist will use various manual techniques, such as massage and joint mobilization, to increase mobility. Throughout the course of your program, your physical therapist will also teach you exercises to improve strength of the quadriceps and hip musculature and specific stretches to increase flexibility. Depending on your goals, your therapist may also tailor your program to include sports or activity specific exercises or drills as you progress in physical therapy.