What Is Meniscus and How it can become Injured?

Janice CarsonJanice Carson

Understanding the meniscus and how it can become injured is a good idea for those dealing with joint related pain.

There are numerous parts of the human anatomy that may at some point cause us pain due to failure or trauma. In terms of the knee and knee related pain, the meniscus is often a part of the knee anatomy that can cause serious injury to occur. It’s something that is present in other parts of the body as well, but in most cases the knee is where issues concerning it will occur.

What is Meniscus?

Basically, this is a c-shaped disc that is rubbery in texture and resilience. It actually provides a kind of cushion for your knee to protect it from injury and to help maintain your balance. Each of your knees will have two menisci. One lies at the outer edge of the knee and the other lies on the inner edge. They work by helping to balance your weight evenly and effectively across your knee. When they become injured, your knee may stop working properly and you may experience pain as well as difficulty using the knee or standing.

The specific issue that occurs within this part of the knee is known as a tear. It’s just what it sounds like and involves the rubbery tissue tearing to some degree. Usually this is caused by a sudden twist or turn while the foot remains planted. It’s common among athletes, but may happen to virtually anyone.

The severity of the pain and other symptoms will depend on the severity of the injury itself. Minor tears are usually accompanied by pain and a bit of swelling that will usually heal itself after a couple of weeks. Moderate tears cause greater levels of pain and much more intense swelling. Usually these tears will heal after rest, but can come back and bother a patient for years. And finally, severe tears may cause the knee to lock in place. Torn pieces of the meniscus may move into the knee’s joint space and cause significant pain, swelling, and stiffness.

You’ll need to get help from a medical professional for diagnosing your specific issue as well as for determining just what you should expect in terms of treatment options. You don’t have to live with pain, and though the specific options for your treatment will depend upon the severity of your tear, It’s possible to overcome the problem at least to some degree.

 

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