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Child Orthopedics
Spine - Cervical
Spine - Lumbar
Spine - Thoracic

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I saw three doctors before getting a diagnosis of torn meniscus as the cause of my chronic knee pain. Is it really so hard to find this problem?

Yes. Diagnosing a meniscal tear can be difficult even for experienced doctors. MRIs are fairly accurate but expensive. Doctors still rely on the patient's history and physical exam the most.

Standard tests for meniscal tear include McMurray's test and joint line tenderness (JLT). Most doctors will use these tests first before doing an arthroscopic exam. During arthroscopy a long thin needle is inserted into the joint. A tiny TV camera on the end of the needle gives the doctor a view inside the joint. A tear of the meniscus can be seen and repaired at the same time.

Other tests for meniscal tears are being studied. One such test is a standing McMurray's test called the Ege's test. The patient must be able to squat from a standing position with the feet and knees turned in and turned out. This test mimics the original cause of the problem and may help doctors find meniscal tears more easily in the future.


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