The menisci are the two pieces of cartilage that hold your thighbone to the shinbone. These soft tissues can be torn while playing sports if you bend your knees while your legs are not in the proper alignment, or when lifting something heavy. While the tear may not be severe and can heal with rest, sometimes you will need surgery done by an orthopedic surgeon to fix it. Here are a few tips to ensure an easier recovery from the procedure.
Improve Your Health Before Surgery
Most of the time, you will have at least a few weeks from the time of your injury until surgery is performed. During this time, try to lose as much extra weight you have as possible. If you are diabetic, make sure you pay attention to your blood sugar level and work hard to keep it normal. In addition, now is the time to quit smoking if you do. These three things can not only increase the risk of complications during and after surgery but will increase your recovery time.
While you need to rest your knee before surgery to reduce any inflammation and avoid causing more damage, it is important that you get up and move your knee afterward. Your orthopedic surgeon will probably recommend regular physical therapy sessions. Make sure you attend all sessions. However, it is also important that you stay mobile and stretch when you are at home. This does not mean you need to go out and run a mile, but do not sit in bed all day.
Wear a Knee Brace
Your knee is going to feel and be a bit unstable for a while. Wearing a knee brace can help hold the bones in proper alignment while the tear heals. Even though the tear has been repaired, it is still possible to rip the sutures if the bones slip. In addition, the brace will give you the confidence to get up and move more often. If the brace is not helping as much as you feel it should ask your surgeon and physical therapist about using crutches for a few days.
If you have any questions or concerns after having meniscus surgery, contact the surgeon's office. While some pain is to be expected, if it is severe or constant, something may be wrong. In addition, if the surgery site feels warm to the touch, or there is any shooting pain, you may have developed an infection. Luckily, this type of surgery has few complications and you should have a full recovery in one to three months.
To learn more, contact a clinic like Orthopaedic Associates Of Rochester.