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The meniscus is a C-shaped disc that cushions your knees on both sides to absorb the shock in your joint and to hold your knee in place. Through sharp pivoting and turns, you can tear the meniscus -- and in extreme circumstances your ACL, the ligament in the center of your knee that limits rotation and forward motion. "If you find yourself feeling suddenly stiff, or have an occasional sharp pain inside the knee with swelling, as well as your knee locking or buckling, these could all be signs of a meniscus tear," says Dr. Popovitz.
Fix It Fast: Dr. Popovitz says that not all tears have to be repaired with surgery. But because it's such a minimally invasive procedure, many runners choose to get it done so they don't have to constantly worry about their limbs. Depending on where the tear is and how serious it is, smaller ones can be treated with resting the knee, frequent icing, and physical therapy.