A car accident can deliver a forceful blow to the occupants seated inside the vehicles involved in the collision. As a result, the force of the crash can cause an occupant’s knees to hit the dashboard and result in a knee injury. One type of injury to the knee that occurs in car accidents is a torn meniscus, which is usually the result of hyperextension of the knee (an extension of the knee beyond its normal range of motion).
What Is a Meniscus?
The meniscus acts as a cushion in your knee. Each knee has two menisci, which are located at the inner and outer edges of the knee. They are C-shaped discs of cartilage that help to evenly distribute one’s body weight onto the femur and tibia.
What Happens When a Meniscus Tears?
Generally, a torn meniscus will cause a person pain and the sensation that his or her knee is giving out when walking. It will also cause the affected knee to swell and become stiff. Sometimes this can happen immediately or within a few days of the injury. Also, a person with a meniscal tear might not be able to straighten the injured leg due to it locking—the result of a torn meniscus moving into the joint space.
The Effects of a Torn Meniscus
Because the knee is the largest joint in your body, knee injuries can be disabling. Since knees are used to sit, stand, walk, and support one’s body weight, a torn meniscus can seriously impact someone’s mobility. This is definitely the case when a meniscal tear occurs alongside another knee injury, such as an anterior cruciate ligament (ACL) and/or medial collateral ligament (MCL) tear.
Your Knee Pain
If you experience even the slightest degree of pain in your knee after a car accident, it is important that you seek medical attention. If a torn meniscus isn’t treated properly, it can result in long-term damage. You may need arthroscopic surgery to repair the tear, followed by months of physical therapy in order to return to normal.
If an accident that wasn’t your fault left you with a knee injury and mounting medical bills, you need to consult with an attorney experienced in car accident claims. Please call us at (301) 942-9118 or connect with our office via the live chat button located on the left of the screen.