A patient’s perspective on meniscus surgery

Partial meniscectomy, where the orthopaedic surgeon arthroscopically trims out the torn portion of the meniscus to treat a meniscus tear, is the most common surgery in orthopaedics. The increase in the older population and the desire of so many people to stay active later in life likely play a role in the frequency of these surgeries.

There has also been growing debate over the role of surgery for degenerative meniscus tears. They often coexist with osteoarthritis. I receive hundreds of questions from readers and listeners all over the world who underwent partial meniscectomy it does not improve as much as they had hoped. Many also expressed concern that recovery was more difficult than they had expected.

Due to all of these questions, I think it would be useful to share the experience of a runner who underwent a partial meniscectomy surgery. And this post, share an audio interview I did with Marvin Rajt, who kept a diary of his journey from surgery through his first walk after surgery to his most recent competition. Since every patient and every knee is different, his experience my differ from those of others. I hope his journey can help you.

Interview with Marvin Rajt


Timeline: Topics and questions
0:14 Issues surrounding partial meniscectomy
1:34 What was your activity level before your knee problems developed?
3:00 What kinds of issues were you having with your knee?
3:47 What treatments did you try before surgery?
4:34 What injury did you have in your knee?
5:13 What expectations and concerns did you have heading into surgery?
5:42 What was your experience during and immediately after surgery?
7:27 Did you have much pain, swelling, and stiffness after surgery?
8:02 How did your first exercise session after surgery go?
10:04 How did your return-to-running program go?
12:02 Did you have any setbacks along the way?
13:03 Are you back to all of the exercise and activity you want to do?
13:37 How does your result compare to those you know who have undergone a similar type of surgery?
15:04 What advice would you give to patients considering knee surgery and partial meniscectomy?

Also read:
Partial meniscectomy: Frequently asked questions
Ask Dr. Geier – Is surgery necessary for a meniscus tear?
Ask Dr. Geier – Meniscus Tears

Have you had surgery for a meniscus tear? Do you have any advice for other active people preparing to undergo this surgery? Share your thoughts below!

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david-headshot I am an orthopaedic surgeon and sports medicine specialist in Charleston, South Carolina.

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