Meniscus Tear Treatment & Surgery in Singapore
Meniscus tear: causes and treatment options in Singapore
What is a meniscus?
The meniscus is a cartilage piece that is shaped like a ‘C’ and is located in each of your knee joints. It plays a crucial role in stabilising the knee joint, absorbing shock, and aiding in smooth joint movement.
What is a torn meniscus?
A torn meniscus occurs when the cartilage is damaged or torn due to various factors, such as sudden twisting, deep squatting and repetitive stress on the knee joint. This injury can cause pain, swelling, and limited range of motion in the affected knee.
What are the causes of a meniscus tear?
Sudden, forceful twisting or impact to the knee during sports or accidents.
- Degenerative changes
Natural wear and tear due to ageing makes the meniscus more vulnerable.
- Repetitive movements
Engaging in frequent squatting, kneeling, or pivoting activities can increase the risk.
Excess weight stresses the knee joint, making it more susceptible to injury.
Signs and symptoms of a Meniscus Tear
We may hear a “popping” sound when the injury occurs, followed by leg buckling when trying to stand on it, pain and limitation of movement. This may indicate a ligament injury. Meniscus tear tends to appear concurrently with severe ligamentous injuries.
We may also experience:
- sharp pain when bending or extending the knee
- limitation in the range of motion.
Types of Meniscus Tear
- Intrasubsustance / Incomplete Tear
- Radial Tear
- Horizontal Tear
- Bucket Handle Tear
- Complex Tear
- Flap Tear
What are the Investigations or Procedures that can be conducted?
Knee injuries are diagnosed by proper history and physical examination. Other special investigative tools may be ordered. These include:
- X-ray and CT scans
- MRI to evaluate soft tissue damage (ligaments and cartilage)
- Arthroscopy to enable the surgeon to view your knee joint through small incisions.
If the meniscus is torn, it can either be repaired or removed if it is damaged beyond repair.
Treatments for meniscus tears in Singapore
Non-surgical treatments for meniscus tears in Singapore
Pain and swelling from meniscus tears can be reduced with anti-inflammatory medications. Your orthopaedic specialist will determine the appropriate medication and dosage for your case.
Physiotherapy focuses on strengthening the muscles around the knee joint, improving joint stability and enhancing the range of motion. It is often recommended for individuals with less severe meniscus tears.
Surgical options for meniscus tears in Singapore
Arthroscopic meniscus tear surgery
Arthroscopic meniscus repair is a minimally invasive surgery that involves using a tiny camera (arthroscope) and making small incisions. This technique lets your surgeon repair the torn meniscus precisely, promoting faster recovery and preserving as much healthy tissue as possible.
What happens in a Knee Arthroscopy?
The surgeon will give you an anesthetic before performing a knee arthroscopy. This may be:
- Regional anesthesia (numbs you from the waist down)
- General anesthesia (put you completely to sleep)
The surgery is performed in the Operating Theatre either under general or local anaesthesia.
The surgeon will insert the arthroscope into the joint through 2 tiny cuts of approximately 1 cm in size. The arthroscope carries fibro-optic lights and is attached to a video camera. This allows visualization of the torn meniscus for successful repair or debridement to be done.
At the end of the procedure, a bulky dressing is applied.
Benefits of Arthroscopic procedure for repairing Meniscus Tear
- Less traumatic to the muscle
- Smaller Incisions
- Faster healing
- More Rapid Recovery
- Less Scarring
What should one do when you get home?
- The patient has to take medications that being prescribed in the clinic. Medications will help them to minimize the swelling and pain over operated knees. The pain will be subsided gradually each day
- Patient has to walk around his/her home using a front-wheel walker, crutches or a cane (assistive walking device) that the physiotherapist instructed to use
- To do daily knee exercise that being advised from physiotherapist in order to regain the muscle strength and improve the range of movements for the operated knees
- Keep the wound clean and dry at all the time to prevent from any infection
- To cover the operated knee with waterproof protector during shower
- To come back for post-op review appointment given from the clinic so that the surgeon can review the wounds
Frequently Asked Questions
Which treatment is suitable for me?
The most suitable treatment option depends on your meniscus tear severity and overall health. Your orthopaedic specialist will evaluate your condition and recommend the best action.
How are the meniscus tear surgeries performed?
Arthroscopic meniscus repair and partial meniscectomy are typically performed under anaesthesia. Your surgeon will make small incisions, insert specialised instruments, and carefully address the torn meniscus.
What are the risks and complications of meniscus tear surgeries?
Like any surgery, there are potential risks involved. With meniscus tear surgery, complications such as infection, blood clots, or persistent pain may occur. Your surgeon will discuss these with you and take steps to minimise the risk of them occurring.
Is it possible to prevent a meniscus tear?
While some tears are unavoidable, maintaining good knee health through regular exercise, proper warm-up techniques, and avoiding activities that stress the knee can reduce your risk.
Is surgery necessary for my meniscus tear?
Not all meniscus tears require surgery. Less severe tears can often be managed with non-surgical treatments like physiotherapy and medication. Your orthopaedic specialist will help you make an informed decision.
How much does a meniscus tear surgery cost?
The cost of meniscus tear surgery depends on several factors, including the extent of the injury and the type of procedure. Our specialists can provide a personalised estimate.
How long does it take to recover post-surgery?
Recovery times can vary, but many patients return to normal activities within weeks to months. We will provide a customised rehabilitation plan to aid your recovery.
Spire Orthopaedic’s team of experienced orthopaedic specialists in Singapore is dedicated to providing you with the most effective and personalised treatment options for meniscus tears. Contact us today to schedule a consultation and take the first step toward a pain-free, active life.