Articular cartilage damage
Damage to knee articular cartilage can occur from trauma to the knee or while playing sports, exercising, working or simply performing everyday activities. Chronic knee pain is common. In addition to pain, symptoms such as swelling, clicking, locking and catching can limit even simple tasks such as climbing stairs. The source of these problems may indicate a knee cartilage injury.
Articular cartilage does not have the ability to heal on its own. Normally, blood vessels bring nutrients and cells to help heal an injured area. Cartilage doesn’t have blood vessels, so it can’t heal itself. Damaged articular cartilage can irritate the joint, which may become inflamed and painful. When the injury is large enough, the cartilage no longer protects the bone underneath it; the pain increases, and if the injury is not treated it may get worse.
Use the interactive tool below for a closer look at the differences between small, medium, and large articular cartilage lesions.
Click to view Cartilage Damage
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