Background: Radial meniscal tears historically have been treated by partial meniscectomy, although they are more biomechanically detrimental than longitudinal tears. Clinical results after meniscal repair for radial tears of the midbody of the lateral meniscus have been reported rarely.
Case series: Level of evidence, 4.
Methods: Fourteen consecutive patients who had radial tears of the midbody of the lateral meniscus underwent arthroscopic repair. Inclusion criteria were radial tears involving the red-red or red-white zone. All patients underwent all-inside meniscal repair using absorbable sutures. Postoperative evaluation was performed using joint-line tenderness, McMurray test, range of motion, and follow-up magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) scan at 6 months postoperatively. Lysholm knee score and Tegner activity level were evaluated at last follow-up. In 4 patients, second-look arthroscopies were performed.
Results: The average follow-up was 36.3 months. No patient had joint-line tenderness. Three patients complained of pain or a click on McMurray test. The mean follow-up range of motion was 138.6°. Follow-up MRI scans demonstrated that 5 (35.7%) menisci were healed, 8 (57.1%) were partially healed, and 1 (7.1%) was not healed. The follow-up Lysholm score was 94.7 (range, 81-100; standard deviation [SD] = 6.4) and Tegner score was 5.7 (range, 3-7; SD = 1.4). Second-look arthroscopies in 4 patients showed partial healing of meniscal tears.
Conclusion: Meniscal repair for radial tears of the midbody of the lateral meniscus may be an effective, alternative treatment to partial meniscectomy.