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What Is a Meniscus Tear in the Knee?

A meniscus tear is a type of injury that occurs in the knee. The menisci are discs that serve to cushion the knee and balance weight across the knee. There are two menisci in each knee: one is on the outer edge, and one is on the inner edge. A meniscus tear typically happens as a result of a physical injury (when the knee is rotated too quickly while it’s bearing weight), but they can also occur due to normal wear and tear as you age.

A meniscus tear is particularly common among athletes, but they can also occur from heavy lifting, sudden turns, or squatting. Some sports have a higher risk for a meniscus tear than others, including tennis, soccer, football, and basketball.

Symptoms of a Meniscus Tear

A meniscus tear can range from mild to severe. Symptoms of a mild meniscus tear typically include pain and immediate swelling. On the other hand, a moderate or severe tear may include immediate or delayed swelling, intense pain that worsens, stiffness, a popping sound, limited motion, and the feeling that your knee is weak or locking up. Symptoms for mild to moderate tears may go away after a couple of weeks, but can return if the knee is overused.

Treatment for a Meniscus Tear

To determine treatment for a meniscus tear, your doctor will examine your knee to determine the type and severity of the tear. Depending on the situation, you’ll likely start with more conservative treatment options, such as physical therapy, elevated rest, and icing your knee. In more severe cases, however, you may need surgery to repair or remove pieces of the torn meniscus.

Schedule an Appointment

If you are currently experiencing symptoms or believe you’ve torn your meniscus, contact us at Performance Orthopaedics to schedule an appointment for an examination and to discuss treatment options.

Wonderful Client Feedback

Dr. Diehl always listens and takes the most conservative approach for the injury rather than surgery first. He’s taken care of several of my sprains & falls. Highly recommend.


I really like Dr. Maurer. He is so down-to-earth and honest. I’ve learned to trust his advice and guidance because he cares about his patients.


Scheduling was quick, office staff was friendly and efficient and nurse and x-ray tech were friendly and thorough. Dr. Lessner was prompt and friendly. He made us feel comfortable and explained everything clearly and thoroughly.


This has been one of the best medical care experiences I’ve had, from our initial consultation to post-op visits to physical therapy. Dr. Diehl and his team are a very caring, friendly, and professional group. I had a left knee injury (meniscus and ACL tears). Thank you!!


Very impressed with Dr. Lessner. Very thorough and listened to me. He gave me multiple treatment options and involved me in the decision making. Highly recommend!


Dr. Diehl was very kind and caring. I don’t think there is a person in this office who is not professional and personable. They go above and beyond for their patients.