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Arthroscopic Meniscus Repair

By Steven Meier

Arthroscopic meniscus repair is a surgical procedure used by orthopedic surgeons to repair a tear in the meniscus, the cartilage surrounding the knee. In a healthy knee, an intact meniscus supports and keeps the knee stable in the joint. When an injury related to either sports or strenuous activity causes the cartilage to tear, it often leads to pain, swelling, and in some cases stiffness and difficulty in fully extending the knee. Mild and moderate tears can usually heal over time with icing and rest, but in more extreme cases in which the tear is more significant, orthopedic specialists can suggest surgery to repair the damage.

Arthroscopic Meniscus Repair

During arthroscopic meniscus repair surgery, an orthopedic surgeon will make several small incisions around the knee and insert a small tube called an arthroscope. An arthroscope contains a camera and light and allows the surgeon to assess damage to the knee and the severity of the meniscal tear in a minimally invasive procedure. If a portion of the cartilage from the tear has moved into the joint space, resulting in excessive pain and swelling in the knee, the surgeon will remove the extra cartilage.

Some tears respond better to the surgical procedure than others, depending on the location and size of the tear, and in some cases the physical fitness and pre-injury activity levels of the patient. When an orthopedic surgeon determines surgery to be the best course of action for a meniscus tear, he or she will prescribe an exercise and rehabilitation plan tailored for the patient after surgery. Rehabilitation timeframes and the amount of time it takes before a patient can return to normal activity varies from patient to patient, and it is very important that each patient follow the particular rehab plan prescribed by the operating surgeon for optimal recovery.

Next, read about a torn meniscus.

Dr. Steven Meier
Steven Meier

Dr. Steven Meier is a renowned board certified orthopedic surgeon specializing in regenerative sports medicine and arthroscopic surgery. Dr. Meier believes in treating each patient individually according to their needs.

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