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The menisci are crescent-shaped fibrocartilage cushions found in the knee joint.
This usually occurs due to trauma during contact sports.
The knee is a complex joint, actually it’s a combination of three joints.
The menisci act to absorb compressive force, which can reach up to three times the body weight while walking!
In addition, the menisci have a cup-shaped surface which provides a deeper place for the condyles to fit in improving joint’s stability.
Next, the knee joint is supported by a number of ligaments.
So, within the joint space, there's the anterior cruciate ligament, or ACL, which runs from the anterior middle edge of the tibia to the lateral condyle of the femur, and the posterior cruciate ligament, or PCL, that runs from the middle posterior edge of the tibia to the medial condyle of the femur.
Now, outside the joint space, we’ve got one collateral ligament between the femur and the tibia on each side of the joint, which are the lateral collateral ligament, or LCL, and the medial collateral ligament, or MCL.
Meniscus tear is when one or both of the menisci of the knee joint are torn. Acute tears usually occur in athletes during contact sports, when the menisci are violently compressed. Chronic tears can also occur, often in older people due to wear and tear changes of menisci. Symptoms include pain, swelling, and stiffness, and the diagnosis is mainly based on clinical symptoms, physical exam with an MRI for confirmation. Treatment can be conservative, or by open or arthroscopic surgery.
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