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Meniscal Transplant Surgery

Diagnosis

With good physical examination meniscal (cushions in the knee joint) tear can be identified. However, to establish the extent and grade of injury, further investigations would be helpful. The irreparability of the meniscus will be determined based on the MRI scan evaluation. 

X-ray. X-ray is performed and is useful to rule out any bone injuries. Menisci are not visible on the X-ray. 

 

MRI Scan. MRI Scan is the gold standard investigation to identify the type and extent of the meniscus injury. In addition, it helps to assess the condition of the cartilage and ligaments. Often these structures are also affected and may need attention.

 

Treatment

ACL + Meniscal Injury

In patients with ACL and meniscal tear, at the time of ACL reconstruction surgery, meniscus surgery is undertaken as well to help stabilise the knee.

Meniscal Transplant Surgery

Meniscal transplant surgery is an arthroscopic (key hole ) surgery. In patients with irreparable meniscus this surgery is considered. 

The criteria for undergoing this surgery are 

  • Young and active patient

  • irreparably damaged meniscus

  • No signs of joint arthritis

  • Patients with previous meniscectomy surgery

The availability of the matching sized cadaveric meniscus is mandatory before the surgery is undertaken. 

During the surgery any remaining parts of the non-viable meniscus is removed. Using special technique, the healthy meniscus is rail-roaded into the joint using sutures and special technique. The meniscus is fixed to the remaining capsule of the joint and the shin bone using special sutures and tightropes and endobutton. 

Meniscal Repair Rehabilitation

Post-surgery, you are allowed to walk on the same day evening. Partial weight bearing on the front of the foot and use of walker is recommended for upto 4 weeks. Physiotherapy exercises start early. In the first 6 weeks the focus is mainly on getting the full ROM and help regain the muscle strength. The whole rehabilitation process will take about 4 to 5 months before returning back to playing sports on the ground or court.

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