The knee joint contains three bones: the thigh bone (femur), shin bone (tibia) and the knee cap (patella). The knee also contains two types of soft tissue: ligaments, which connect the thigh and shinbones and keep the joints stable, and cartilage. Knee pain usually results from an injury that damages these soft tissues and can dramatically alter an individual's lifestyle.
Normal knee function requires a smooth articular cartilage surface, an intact meniscus, and stable connective ligaments.
Articular cartilage: Articular cartilage is a durable tissue that covers the end of the thigh and shinbones. Articular cartilage can be damaged by sports, traumatic injuries, work injuries or daily wear and tear. Damage to articular cartilage often occurs in conjunction with damage to another area of the knee, such as the Anterior Cruciate Ligament (ACL) or the Meniscus. Articular cartilage does not have a natural ability to heal itself, but there are many treatment options to repair the damaged cartilage.
Meniscus: The second type of cartilage in the knee is meniscal cartilage. The knee has two of these crescent-shaped wedges of cartilage, one on the outside (lateral meniscus) and one on the inside (medial meniscus). The meniscus acts as a cushion between the bones and as a stabilizing tissue for the knee.
Meet The Team Cathy Fieseler, MD William R. Hobbs, MD Mark Hubert, MD Roger L. McCown II, DO Jayesh Patel, MD William F. Phillips III, MD Paul Rath, MD Adam Schneider, MD Joshua D. Stein, MD Allison Tobola, MD Thomas B. Volatile, MD