Surgical Treatment and Complications
Due to the poor blood supply to the inner parts of the meniscus, tears often will not heal on their own, which can cause symptoms that interfere with your normal daily activities. For this reason, you may need surgery to repair a tear in your meniscus.
This type of surgery is typically performed by making several small incisions around the knee and using an arthroscope (a camera to look inside the knee joint). This is usually an outpatient procedure.
Some meniscus tears can be prepared through the use of stitches by the surgeon. Some cases, however, cannot be repaired in this way. When this is the case, the surgeon will trim away the torn portion of the meniscus to prevent further damage to the knee joint.
Whether a meniscus tear is repaired or trimmed away depends on the tear’s pattern, size, and location. Younger patients, like children and young adults, have higher repair rates than older people. Still, ultimately, the decision of whether to repair or trim the meniscus will be made at the time of surgery based on the characteristics of the tear.
Some complications could arise from meniscus surgery, just like any surgical procedure. Complications could be knee stiffness, re-tearing of the meniscus, or infection. To prevent infection, the surgeon will give you antibiotics during your surgery. You will likely begin physical therapy 1-2 weeks after surgery to avoid stiffness or re-tearing of the meniscus.