Meniscal tears can be incidentally encountered at the time of anterior cruciate ligament (ACL) reconstruction. In these cases, the surgeon has several treatment options that include benign neglect, debridement, trephination, and repair. The authors performed a systematic review of the literature studying the various treatment options for meniscal tears discovered at the time of ACL reconstruction. This systematic review included eight articles that had relevant data regarding benign neglect compared with debridement, trephination, or repair of incidentally encountered meniscal tears. Combined data from these studies resulted in a total of 646 meniscal tears treated with benign neglect with follow-up information available. Importantly, there were differences in reoperation rates between medial and lateral meniscal tears left in situ. However, stable medial and lateral meniscal tears treated with benign neglect did not have different subjective or objective outcomes than those treated with surgical intervention. This systematic review concludes that when stable meniscal tears are encountered at the time of arthroscopic ACL reconstruction, benign neglect can be used for a successful outcome.
- Anterior cruciate ligament reconstruction
- Benign neglect
- Systematic review