Rediscovering Strength & Rejoining Competitive Wrestling After Left Medial Meniscus Repair

Athletes are at risk for certain injuries, and depending on the activity, our bodies’ resilience is often tested. 

Noah, a competitive wrestler and assistant coach at American Top Team Orlando, faced a pivotal moment during a wrestling session with his head coach, which led him to see Bradd G. Burkhart, M.D., a board-certified orthopaedic surgeon specializing in meniscus surgery at Orlando Orthopaedic Center

 “I felt what would be described as a knuckle kind of cracking in my left knee, and I felt a lot of pain,” recalls Noah.  His experience with left medial meniscus repair sheds light on the importance of medical intervention when enduring an injury as a competitive athlete. 

Thanks to Dr. Burkhart’s expertise with meniscus surgery, Noah got back on his feet, accomplished feats like a 30-day trek in the Himalayas, and returned to competitive Jiu-Jitsu. 

Read more about this procedure below to understand medial meniscus repair and what recovery was like for Noah.

What is a Left Medial Meniscus Repair, and Why Might You Need One?

A left medial meniscus repair is a surgical procedure to fix tears in the medial meniscus, a vital component of the knee that acts as a shock absorber between the thigh and shin bones. Injuries to this part of the knee are common among athletes and those engaged in physical activities that stress the knees. 

Persistent knee pain, swelling, or instability, often resulting from acute injury or degenerative changes due to age, may be indicators that it’s time to see an orthopaedic knee specialist.

How Do You Prepare for a Medical Meniscus Surgery? 

Preparation for medial meniscus surgery involves several steps to ensure a successful outcome. Patients are generally advised to undergo preoperative assessments, including MRI scans, to evaluate the extent of the damage. Physical preparation, such as strengthening the muscles around the knee, can aid in recovery. Additionally, discussing expectations, potential risks, and recovery with your surgeon is crucial.

What is the Recovery Process Like After the Surgery?

The recovery process after a medial meniscus repair varies depending on the severity of the tear and the individual’s health. 

Rest, ice, compression, and elevation (RICE) are initially recommended to reduce swelling and pain. Physical therapy plays a vital role in regaining strength and mobility. Patients typically resume light activities within a few weeks, though full recovery and return to sports may take several months.

How Does Life Change Post-Recovery? 

Life post-recovery can see a significant quality improvement, as with Noah. After the necessary rehabilitation, many patients return to their pre-injury activity levels or even take on new challenges. The success of the surgery and recovery process often leads to a greater appreciation of physical health, encouraging a proactive approach to maintaining it.

Getting Back to Life After Meniscus Surgery 

Noah’s journey through his diagnosis, surgery, and recovery of a left medial meniscus tear is a testament to the human spirit’s resilience. It highlights the role of medical intervention in restoring our ability to pursue our passions and live fulfilling lives.

Whether facing your first surgery or coming back for another, the journey through meniscus repair is a path back to doing what you love, a reminder that with the proper support, we can overcome our physical challenges and achieve more than we ever thought possible. Want to get a diagnosis of your knee pain? Schedule a consultation at Orlando Orthopaedic Center or view our walk-in locations.