ST. CLOUD -- A new medical study is shedding light on the the difference between surgery and physical therapy.

The study shows therapy can offer less health risks and a cheaper cost for a common knee injury than surgery.

Tom Jensen is the director of the Orthopedic Sports Center at St. Cloud Orthopedics. He says both options should be considered depending on symptoms.

The location and size of the tear can determine if therapy or surgery is needed. Even a patient's age can be a factor in the process.

A surgical procedure can be expensive, costing patients thousands of dollars. Jensen says therapy is a cost-savings option, but only if it is warranted.

Jenson says surgeons will always look to nonsurgical options as much as they can.

The study notes that therapy did not always help and some patients wound up having surgery to fix the problem.

The medical survey is published online by the New England Journal of Medicine.