Duration of an outer meniscus tear
The healing time for a ruptured outer meniscus varies considerably from one individual to another. In particular, the extent and location of the injury and the chosen treatment method determine the duration of healing of an external meniscus tear. Since the outer meniscus is poorly supplied with blood and therefore with limited nutrients, the healing of the cartilage can take a very long time.
Especially when central areas of the cartilage are affected, this is unfavourable for a fast healing process. In any case, it is important to start treatment as soon as possible, as otherwise consequential damage such as knee joint arthrosis can occur and permanent complaints can be expected. The duration of healing also depends on the success of the therapy.
For example, conservative therapy is not always successful, even with minor injuries, and surgical therapy must follow. Positive results can be expected after a few weeks or months with conservative therapy. An important aspect of surgical therapy is the consistent follow-up treatment, which can last for different lengths of time depending on the surgical method.
For example, after suturing the tear or partial removal of the cartilage, partial or full loading of the knee joint can take place after just a few weeks, while the follow-up treatment of a cartilage transplant can last a very long time. The duration of healing and treatment of an external meniscus tear depends in principle on the individual extent of the injury. The length of time for which a patient is on sick leave in an individual case is also determined by the activity performed.
Thus, depending on the injury, treatment and activity, sick leave can usually last between 3 weeks and 6 months. As a rule, check-ups are carried out to examine the course of treatment and the possibility of exercising the profession during the course of the treatment. Consistent follow-up treatment and adequate protection of the knee joint is the main focus of most treatment methods for a torn outer meniscus.
Early loading of the cartilage can have an unfavourable effect on the healing process and promote the development of possible consequential damage. In particular, persons with technically demanding jobs that place a high strain on the knee joint should stay away from work longer than persons with a lower occupational strain on the knee joint. Conservative treatment for minor damage to the cartilage as well as some surgical treatments can allow partial or full loading of the cartilage after only a few weeks.
Severe damage or tears of the outer meniscus at unfavourable locations can result in a long follow-up treatment period and thus a long sick leave. How long an individual sick leave lasts will be decided by the attending physician in the course of follow-up treatment.