What is an Articular Cartilage Defect?
The articular cartilage in the knee is responsible for protecting the three bones in the joint from friction. This slick substance covers the ends of the tibia, femur and under the kneecap to provide a slippery surface on top of the bones to minimize friction when the bones in the knee joint move. When the articular cartilage is injured or worn, it can result in an articular cartilage defect. At Robotic Joint Center, we offer articular cartilage defect repair and restoration at our medical center in New York City.
What is an articular cartilage defect? The most common types are caused by either injury or degenerative disease, and sometimes by both. Trauma to the knee can tear the articular cartilage – this can be a sports injury, blunt force to the knee or fractured bones. Trauma can rip the cartilage or create loose bodies of cartilage in the joint.
Degenerative disease is another source of an articular cartilage defect. Osteoarthritis is one of the main causes of widespread cartilage damage in the knee joint. Localized wear and tear can also result in softening of the articular cartilage, which is common in older adults with degenerative knee joint conditions.
Symptoms of a Knee Articular Cartilage Defect
There aren’t any nerve fibers in articular cartilage, so it is possible to tear or damage the tissue without feeling pain. However, loose bodies and friction caused by cartilage trauma or degenerative disease can result in inflammation and pain. Those with a knee articular cartilage defect may experience:
- Crackling sound/sensation in the knee
- Pain and stiffness, especially after sitting for long periods
- Catching sensation within the knee joint
If a knee articular cartilage defect is causing pain or mobility issues, there are treatment options. At Robotic Joint Center, we offer knee articular cartilage restoration and repair treatments for knee pain relief and improved joint function. To learn more about treatment for a knee articular cartilage defect, contact us at our medical center in UES Manhattan.