Cartilage Restoration


Image Credit: Ontario Stem Cell Research Centre

What is Cartilage Regeneration?

Modern living brings with it, added mobility. Aging is much less of a factor today, than it was in previous generations. Regardless of stage in life, individuals want the ability to do more than just the day to day living, they want to do things like go sporting and even go on vacations. With age and even sporting activities comes joint degeneration, and with the ability to improve joint health via science and technology, patients are able to have their joint functions restored, and have the ability to resume their lives as normal.

Orthopedic surgery has evolved to a point where there are a series of surgical techniques which have facilitated the restoration of cartilage. Cartilage regeneration is one such procedure, which facilitates the joint restoration and improved mobility. Consult with your orthopaedic surgeon today, to determine if this treatment will be right for your joint pain. Cartilage regeneration is ideal for the treatment of various root causes of joint pain, and may just be what you need to restore your life activity.

How does Cartilage Regeneration work?

Cartilage regeneration functions by restoration of the articular or joint cartilage. The cartilage in the joint is a fusion of various components such as collagens, proteoglycans and sustaining proteins. Cartilage is alive, and averaging about 85% of water, and the balance the binding elements, it is the joint’s natural cushion. Since joints are hinge joints, motion can induce wear and tear in the cartilage, and decrease the thickness of the film. As we age, the water content, and chrondrocyte cells reduce in number. These cells are hold the cartilage matrix together and give it its strength and ability to line the surrounding bones. Additionally, illnesses such as Osteoarthritis have been heavily linked to cartilage damage. Patients often complain of joint stiffness, with restricted mobility.

How does Cartilage Regeneration Work?

Cartilage, is not a self healing material. From the medical innovation perspective, many efforts have been undertaken to understand why this is so, and what can be done to improve joint health, knowing this condition. The articular cartilage therefore has to be externally generated, and a transplant into the site of injury be facilitated as the treatment method. Essentially, if the body won’t create it, the aim is to synthesize it and restore what was lost in the natural processes of life.

Your orthopaedic surgeon will identify the best path forward for your treatments. With an assortment of restoration options from abrasion, distraction arthroplasty, microfracture, mosaicplasty, autologous chrondrocyte implantation, osteochrondral allografts and matrix assisted chrondrocyte implantation there are a variety of paths for treatments. Everyone’s case will be different, and with thorough analysis via detailed scans, your diagnosis and treatments will determined. Some treatments are acute, and other require more advanced preparatory methods for healing. Research methods are still being studied, to determine which methods are ideal for healing. As an emerging technology, there are limited guarantees, but over time the procedures are finding favor in the eyes of the orthopaedic specialists.