Meniscus Tear – Recovery Information for Knee Injuries and Knee Pain
If you are suffering from a knee injury keep reading this article. I’m going to provide information to speed up recovery and limit pain. Knee injuries are very common and it is indeed important to figure out what type of injury you are dealing with. Let’s take a look at the most common injuries and how to assess recovery.
Meniscus Tear – The menisci are shock absorbers and weight distributors for the knee joint. A meniscus tear normally occurs during an improper or fast movement during flexion (knee bent) and rotation of the leg. The meniscus can be torn in 3 degrees of severity. A mild meniscus tear cause slight swelling and discomfort and may limit range of motion for a short term. A second degree tear generally causes increased swelling, additional pain during movement or weight bearing, and takes longer to heal. This type of tear may require surgery. If you have moderate-severe pain and a large amount of swelling see a doctor right away. Your doctor can provide an MRI which he will use to evaluate the seriousness of your injury. A severe tear to the menisci usually almost always requires surgery.
Torn ACL or other ligaments – Just like a meniscus tear an ACL tear or other ligament tear can be evaluated in degrees of severity. A minor tear may not require surgery and with proper rehab your knee will be close to 100% functional. A moderate ACL tear may require surgery and will cause more pain and swelling. A complete or severe tear to your ACL will require surgery if you want to play sports or run ever again. Post surgery exercises can be completed to nurse your knee back to optimal health.
Exercises for a meniscus or ligament tear – Post surgery requirements for exercises are much different then folks who decide not to go under the knife. Great examples of exercises to strengthen the muscles around the knee include; stationary bike, reverse incline treadmill walking, hamstring curls, supine limited leg extensions (non weight bearing) Ball wall squats (if no pain) supine ball hamstring curls (limited ROM) and single leg balae exercises (non weight bearing, pain free only). In addition to these exercises make sure you ice your knee to reduce swelling and wear the knee brace prescribed by your doctor.
Oh and try not to take too many pain pills. After my surgery I got addicted to pain killers. Not fun!