Meniscus Tears (repair and surgery)
The meniscus is a C-shaped piece of cartilage. Cartilage is found in certain joints and forms a buffer between the bones to protect the joint. The meniscus serves as a shock-absorption system, assists in lubricating the joint, and limits the ability to flex and extend the joint. Meniscal tears are most commonly caused by twisting or over-flexing the joint.
The goal of treatment is to reduce symptoms and protect the joint from further injury while it heals. You should not put your full weight on the knee. You may need to use crutches. A knee immobilizer is often applied to prevent further injury to the joint. Physical activity is allowed, as tolerated. Physical therapy is recommended to help regain joint and leg strength. All of these options should be discussed with your OSMC physician.
The patella, also known as the kneecap is a thick, circular-triangular bone that articulates with the femur and covers and protects the knee joint. It can become irritated or injured from prolonged sitting, overuse, misalignment or instability. The patella can also fracture, which may involve a single crack or shattering into several pieces.
Some of the common conditions associated with the patella include:
- Chondromalacia Patellae (runner’s knee)
- Prepatellar Bursitis (housemaid’s knee)
- Patellar Subluxation/Dislocation (unstable kneecap)
Temporarily resting the knee and taking nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs) such as ibuprofen, naproxen, or aspirin may help relieve pain. Physical therapy, especially quadriceps strengthening and hamstring stretching, may be helpful and can be ordered by your OSMC physician.
If the alignment of the patella cannot be corrected with therapy, surgery may be an option. Depending on the type of misalignment, the surgery may be arthroscopic (using a camera, which allows a smaller incision) or open.
A fracture, or break, in the bone of the upper part of the lower leg (tibia, or shin bone) may result from a low-energy injury, such as a fall from a height, or from a high-energy injury, such as a motor vehicle accident. Proper identification and management of these injuries will help to restore limb function (strength, motion, and stability) and lessen the risk of arthritis.
The soft tissues (skin, muscle, nerves, blood vessels, and ligaments) also may be injured at the time of the fracture. Because of this, your OSMC physicians will also look for any signs of soft-tissue damage and include this in plans for managing the fracture.
One of the most common knee injuries is an anterior cruciate ligament sprain or tear.
Athletes who participate in high demand sports like soccer, football, and basketball are more likely to injure their anterior cruciate ligaments.
If you have injured your anterior cruciate ligament, you may require surgery to regain full function of your knee. This will depend on several factors, such as the severity of your injury and your activity level.