On the ends of your thighbone, shin bone and behind your kneecap you have a layer of cartilage known as articular cartilage. They allow the bones to glide over each other without rubbing. This layer of cartilage can be damaged over time through wear and tear which is known as osteoarthritis. It can also be damaged through an injury causing a defect or lesion in the articular cartilage.
Symptoms include pain, swelling and the knee giving way.
Surgery can involve either microfracture, autologous chondrocyte implantation (ACI) or Biopoly surgery.
Microfracture surgery can be performed to repair the defect by drilling multiple small holes in the bone. This causes bleeding and a formation of a blood clot. The clot encourages the formation of repair cartilage that fills the gap. Although it is not exactly like the articular cartilage it stops the bone rubbing on bone and helps reduce symptoms experienced.
Further detailed information on microfracture surgery, the complications and rehabilitation process can be found in the patient information booklet:
Patient Information and Rehabilitation Guidelines Following Microfracture Surgery.pdf
ACI involves the first operation to obtain cartilage from the patient’s knee (healthy part) and then grown in the lab to produce more cartilage cells. These cells are then implanted in the defected area as a second operation.
Further detailed information on ACI surgery can be found in the patient information booklet:
Patient Information and Rehabilitation Guidelines Following ACI Surgery.pdf
Biopoly surgery involves implanting a device, which uses an advanced biomaterial to resurface the defect in your knee joint.
Further detailed information on Biopoly surgery, the complications and rehabilitation process can be found in the patient information booklet:
Patient information on the BioPoly Focal Knee Implant.pdf