Re: Knee stress
If an orthopedist did a full exam, his conclusions about tears are probably pretty accurate. And the reason he wants the MRI is to help figure out whether surgery would be helpful. If you do have surgery, he'll want the films as a guide.
However, whether you have surgery or not, it'll be a long road back to normal, I'm afraid. If he stitches up your meniscus, that's 6 weeks on crutches immobilized, then you start PT.