Treating a Meniscus Tear: When Is Knee Surgery the Best Option?

You’re in the middle of physical activity. Maybe you’re an athlete, or maybe you’re just out for a run around your neighborhood. Then, a surprise sudden twist or direct impact causes you to feel or hear a pop in your knee, followed by pain, swelling, and stiffness.

You may have experienced a meniscus tear, a condition that might require knee surgery to heal fully. At the Orthopedic Center of Arlington in Arlington, Texas, our experienced team, led by orthopedic surgeon Bruce Prager, MD, can diagnose your meniscus injury and recommend the right course of treatment to resolve your pain and keep you moving freely.

Understanding a meniscus tear

Each of your knees contains two menisci. Each meniscus is a C-shaped piece of cartilage positioned between your femur and your tibia and fibula. Your menisci cushion your knees, absorbing shocks and preventing your legs’ bones from rubbing against one another.

If you tear this cartilage through a sudden twist or direct impact, the integrity of your whole knee joint can become compromised. In addition to symptoms of pain, swelling, and stiffness, you might not be able to extend your knee joint fully, and you can suffer from ongoing knee instability as a result of an untreated meniscus tear.

The right treatment options for you

Dr. Prager and his team at the Orthopedic Center of Arlington start with conservative treatment options for a meniscus tear. But, if treatments and therapies like rest, icing, using a brace, and medication management with nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs) or cortisone injections don’t sufficiently improve your condition, you might need surgical treatment.

Surgical treatment is commonly needed to repair a meniscus tear fully. After surgery and physical therapy, the integrity of your knee joint is restored. Dr. Prager uses arthroscopic surgical techniques to minimize your risks and post-surgery recovery time. Here’s how it works.

During your surgical procedure, we use anesthetics to keep you from feeling pain. Dr. Prager uses specialized surgical instruments to work through just a few tiny incisions. With surgical treatment, Dr. Prager can remove any torn or loosened cartilage from your affected knee, and repair your meniscus with sutures or other techniques.

Arthroscopic knee surgery typically doesn’t require an overnight hospital stay. Once you’ve completed your post-surgery physical therapy, you can return to normal activities on your now-healed knee.

If you have a torn meniscus or knee injury and think you might need surgery, get in touch with the Orthopedic Center of Arlington today. Dr. Prager can evaluate your condition and provide comprehensive care for your knee pain. 

You can schedule your initial consultation appointment over the phone or book your appointment online now.

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