Treatment of Articular Cartilage Defects of the Knee With Microfracture and Enhanced Microfracture Techniques

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Abstract

Chondral injuries in the knee are a common source of pain and morbidity. Treatment of symptomatic chondral defects is challenging due to the limited healing capacity of articular cartilage. Microfracture is the most common surgical technique used to treat chondral defects in the knee and utilizes marrow stimulation to generate a fibrocartilage repair. Microfracture has demonstrated good short-term postoperative outcomes. Long-term outcomes following microfracture are variable, with loss of improvement attributed to the poor mechanical qualities of the fibrous repair tissue. Current research is focusing on ways to optimize the repair environment after microfracture using biological scaffolds (enhanced microfracture) to facilitate chondrogenic differentiation and proliferation to improve the quality of repair tissue.

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