Meniscus Repair Rehabilitation

Meniscus Repair Rehabilitation

(cited from the Stone Clinic

General Considerations:

• Weight-bearing as tolerated status. Walk with crutches
• Surgical knee will be in a hinged rehab brace locked in FULL EXTENSION for 4
weeks post-op
• Regular assessment of gait to avoid compensatory patterns
• Regular manual mobilizations to surgical wounds and associated soft tissue to
decrease the incidence of fibrosis
• No resisted leg extension machines (isotonic or isokinetic)
• No high impact or cutting / twisting activities for at least 4 months post-op
• M.D. follow-up visits at Day 1, Day 8-10, 1 month, 4 months, 6 months, and 1 year
• During the first 4 weeks: TWICE PER DAY: Without brace, allow GRAVITY ONLY to
bend knee back as tolerated BUT NO MORE THAN 90 DEGREES for a good knee
stretch without increase in pain. Relax knee and stretch for 60 seconds

Week 1:

• M.D. visit day 1 post-op to change dressing and review home program
• Icing and elevation regularly. Aim for 5x per day, 15-20 minutes each time. For ice
machine: use as directed
• Exercises:
1) quad-sets 10 sec. holds every 30 minutes
2) straight leg raise exercises (lying, seated, and standing): quadriceps/adduction
/abduction/gluteal sets
3) ankle pumps
throughout the day
4) well-leg stationary cycling
5) upper body conditioning and core strengthening
• Pool / deep water workouts after the first 8-10 days once surgical wounds are healed
and with the use of a brace
• Soft tissue treatments for edema / pain control and to posterior musculature, patella
and incisions
• Knee extension range of motion should be full

Weeks 2 – 4:

• M.D. visit at 8 – 10 days for suture removal and check-up
• Manual resisted exercises (i.e. PNF patterns) of the foot, ankle and hip. Trunk
stabilization program. Single leg balance exercises
• Continue with pain control, range of motion, soft tissue treatments and
proprioception exercises
• Non-weightbearing aerobic exercises (i.e. unilateral cycling, UBE, Schwinn Air-Dyne
with uninvolved leg and arms only, pool workouts)

Weeks 4 – 6:

• M.D. visit at 4 weeks post-op, will wean off the use of rehab brace.
• Stretching, exercises and manual treatments to improve range of motion (especially
• Incorporate functional exercises (i.e. partial squats, calf raises, mini-step-ups,
• Stationary bike and progressing to road cycling as tolerated
• Slow walking on treadmill for gait training (preferably a low-impact treadmill)

Weeks 6 – 8:

• Increase the intensity of functional exercises (i.e. cautiously increase depth of
closed-chain exs.
• Shuttle/leg press). Do not overload closed or open-chain exercises
• Patients should be progressing to walking without a limp and flexion range of motion
should be at 80%

Weeks 8 – 12:

• Add lateral training exercises (side-step ups, Theraband resisted side-stepping,
lateral stepping)
• Introduce more progressive closed chain and agility leg exercises.
• Patients should be pursuing a home program with emphasis on sport/activity-specific
• Knee flexion range of motion should be equal to other knee

Weeks 12-16:

• Low-impact activities until 16 weeks
• Increase the intensity of strength and functional training for gradual return to

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