An Up-to-Date Review of the Meniscus Literature: A Systematic Summary of Systematic Reviews and Meta-analyses

Orthop J Sports Med. 2020 Sep 9;8(9):2325967120950306. doi: 10.1177/2325967120950306. eCollection 2020 Sep.


Background: A large number of systematic reviews and meta-analyses regarding the meniscus have been published.

Purpose: To provide a qualitative summary of the published systematic reviews and meta-analyses regarding the meniscus.

Study design: Systematic review; Level of evidence, 4.

Methods: A systematic search of all meta-analyses and systematic reviews regarding the meniscus and published between July 2009 and July 2019 was performed with PubMed, CINAHL, EMBASE, and the Cochrane database. Published abstracts, narrative reviews, articles not written in English, commentaries, study protocols, and topics that were not focused on the meniscus were excluded. The most pertinent results were extracted and summarized from each study.

Results: A total of 332 articles were found, of which 142 were included. Included articles were summarized and divided into 16 topics: epidemiology, diagnosis, histology, biomechanics, comorbid pathology, animal models, arthroscopic partial meniscectomy (APM), meniscal repair, meniscal root repairs, meniscal allograft transplantation (MAT), meniscal implants and scaffolds, mesenchymal stem cells and growth factors, postoperative rehabilitation, postoperative imaging assessment, patient-reported outcome measures, and cost-effectiveness. The majority of articles focused on APM (20%), MAT (18%), and meniscal repair (17%).

Conclusion: This summary of systematic reviews and meta-analyses delivers surgeons a single source of the current evidence regarding the meniscus.

Keywords: meniscus; meta-analysis; surgery; systematic review.

Publication types

  • Review