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Meniscal Repair Surgery
Meniscal Repair Surgery – Meniscal tears are among the most common knee injuries. Athletes, particularly those who play contact sports, are at risk for meniscal tears. However, anyone at any age can tear a meniscus. When people talk about torn cartilage in the knee, they are usually referring to a torn meniscus.
The meniscus is a circular piece of cartilage with its blood supply coming from the outer rim. In order for the meniscus repair to heal, the tear must be near this outer edge in an area of good blood supply (nutrients from the blood vessels are necessary for healing)—
Tears in the central portion of the meniscus will not heal even if a meniscus repair is performed. These central tears will be removed by your surgeon
*How is the meniscus repair performed
Techniques of meniscus repair include using arthroscopically placed tacks or suturing the torn edges. Both procedures function by reapproximating the torn edges of the meniscus to allow them to heal in their proper place and not get caught in the knee causing the symptoms described above.
Meniscal Repair Surgery – How successful are meniscus repairs?
The success of a meniscus repair surgery is most dependent on two factors. First, if the meniscus repair is attempted on a tear in the central portion of cartilage (where the blood supply is poor), it is likely to fail. Second, patients must be compliant with the post-operative rehabilitation after a meniscus repair.
If the meniscus repair fails (i.e. the repaired cartilage falls apart), which happens between 20 to 40% of the time, a second surgery may be necessary to remove the re-torn meniscus.
Meniscal Repair Surgery – Who needs meniscus repair surgery?
Tears of the meniscus that cause so-called “mechanical symptoms” tend to respond best to surgical treatment. A mechanical symptom is caused by the meniscus physically impeding the normal movement of the knee. Common “mechanical symptoms” include:
• Locking of the knee (unable to bend)
• Inability to fully straighten the knee
• A popping or clicking sound or sensation
In the operating room, the surgeon has two primary options, either remove the torn meniscus (a partial meniscectomy) or perform a meniscus repair surgery to place the edges together with sutures or tacks.
To hear about the experiences of MedToGo International clients who have undergone orthopedic surgery, please visit our testimonials page.
Orthopedics About (dot) com
Ortho Info. AAOS. (dot) org