Episode 89: How much do meniscal tears affect sports performance?

The Dr. David Geier Show
This is a quick reference list for the locations of show topics in Episode 89 of The Dr. David Geier Show.

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In the Zone
Meniscal tears and sports performance (starts at 4:19)

That’s Gotta Hurt
Luol Deng – Chicago Bulls forward (starts at 25:50)
Blake Griffin – Los Angeles Clippers forward (starts at 30:00)
Eddie Lacy – Green Bay Packers running back (starts at 32:07)
Christian Ponder – Minnesota Vikings quarterback (starts at 35:14)
Ricardo Portillo – Utah soccer referee (starts at 38:23)

Ask Dr. Geier
Is there a brace that I can wear for an MCL injury of the knee that would allow me to play hockey? (starts at 41:50)
Can I play soccer in a cast I’m wearing for a scaphoid fracture of the wrist? (starts at 44:18)
Should I undergo surgery for a tibial stress fracture that isn’t healing? (starts at 47:50)
When can I start weightlifting after meniscus surgery? (starts at 50:18)

Fan Favorites and Trash Talkers
Comments from listeners on the show and our previous discussions (starts at 53:43)

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6 Responses to Episode 89: How much do meniscal tears affect sports performance?

  1. Hi Dr. Geier,

    I’m 3 weeks post ACL + Partial Lateral Meniscectomy and I’m researching long term effects of the meniscectomy. In one of your Podcasts on meniscus you mentioned that you recommend limiting squatting to 90 degrees of flexion. I could not determine from the context of your comment if that was a short term recovery/rehab limitation or if that is a long term (forever) recommended limitation. I’m an avid Crossfitter and weight lifter and I’m looking forward to eventually being able to get back to doing full range squats. I’m hoping that is going to be possible without serious long term implications. I’d appreciate your thoughts on what you recommend in the long term regarding squat depth…and if you do recommend stopping at 90 degrees long term, what the risks are of going below 90.

    • Most people only limit knee flexion for 3-4 weeks. Many surgeons don’t limit range of motion after a meniscal repair at all.

      • Thanks for your time doctor. I just want to be sure I understand your reply. For your patients who have had a significant meniscectomy (I’ve had 2/3 of lateral removed) you don’t have any long term squat flexion angle restrictions. Is that correct? For example, is there any significant concern if I do a barbell back squat greater than 90 degrees of flexion (after I’m fully healed)?

  2. Thanks for your time doctor. I just want to be sure I understand your reply. For your patients who have had a significant meniscectomy (I’ve had 2/3 of lateral removed) you don’t have any long term squat flexion angle restrictions. Is that correct? For example, is there any significant concern if I do a barbell back squat greater than 90 degrees of flexion (after I’m fully healed)?

  3. Hi Dr. Geier,
    I am 21 year old male footballer, i suffered a lateral bucket handle meniscus tear currently waiting to have meniscectomy to remove roughly 30% – 40% (if i’m not mistaken, MRI results were over 2 months ago). I was just wondering if i will be able to continue to play competitively after full rehabilitation i.e train twice a week + match on the weekend.

    Thank you

    • Success rates for return to sports and exercise after partial meniscectomy are generally good, especially in younger, more active patients.

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