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Articles » Injuries » Injuries of the lower limbs » Meniscal Tear

Meniscal Tear (Knee Cartilage Tear)

What it Effects

  • The menisci of the knee which are semi-circular in shape and increase the congruency of the knee joint and act as shock absorbers

Who it Effects

  • Common in football players

Mechanism of Injury

  • The menisci can be injured if a rotational/twisting force is applied to the knee whilst weight bearing

Signs and Symptoms

  • Pain but this does not originate from the menisci as it doesn’t have a nerve supply, pain comes from other structures damaged during the rotational force, most commonly the medial collateral ligament and coronary ligaments
  • Swelling
  • Clunk within the knee on flexion and extension
  • Joint locking
  • Knee giving way especially when walking down a flight of stairs
  • Joint line pain


  • Surgery common; especially in sportsmen / women

Additional Information

  • The menisci don’t have a good blood supply therefore they don’t have a good ability to heal. Therefore surgery is often needed especially when a tear interferes with joint mechanics

If you have any questions, please use the comment form below or post a thread on the forums.

— Phil @ 9:35 pm, July 12, 2006

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