A Cartilage Repair Procedure after a Serious Injury
Cartilage plays a critical role in the health of bones, particularly joints. The cartilage is the soft tissue that provides a cushion between bony surfaces. When bones rub together, the resulting friction can result in severe pain. This is the discomfort that people often feel with diseases such as osteoarthritis or rheumatoid arthritis. The lack of cartilage can lead to chronic pain.
Besides chronic diseases, a traumatic injury, such as a broken femur, can also lead to the destruction of cartilage. This can make it hard for people to regain their mobility after a severe accident. Fortunately, there is a way for people to restore their cartilage even after a serious injury.
How Does Cartilage Work?
The cartilage is commonly located between the surfaces of two joints. For example, the knee is a hinge joint that is formed by the articulation of the femur, tibia, and fibula. When these bones work together, they provide the leg with increased mobility. To prevent these bones from rubbing against each other, there is cartilaginous padding among the various surfaces.
In essence, cartilage can be thought of like a shock absorber. When this cartilage starts to degrade, the range of motion of a joint is markedly reduced. Movement can also result in severe pain. This can seriously impair someone’s quality of life.
Destruction of Cartilage Following a Femur Fracture
Trauma from a severe accident can break even the largest bones in the body, such as a femur. In a particularly severe fracture, the bone fragments can actually lead to the destruction of important cartilage. When the cartilage is damaged following a broken femur, the cushion and padding for the knee are lost. This can make it hard for someone to make a full recovery following a traumatic accident. However, there is a procedure that trained doctors can perform to restore this cushion.
A Surgical Procedure for Cartilage Repair
With the help of an experienced orthopedic surgeon, the cartilage surrounding the femur can be restored following a major fracture. Before this operation, the doctor may recommend an MRI. This scan is important because it will give the doctors valuable information regarding the size and the severity of any damage to the surviving cartilage. An MRI scan is also used to monitor someone’s recovery after the procedure is completed.
In some situations, the surgeons may be able to perform this surgical procedure without making a large incision. This is often called an arthroscopic procedure. The surgeons will make a few, small, puncture incisions near the site of the injury. The doctors will place a camera underneath the scan, which will create a high-definition view of the injury site. Once the injury site has been located, the doctor can implant a few cells of healthy cartilage tissue. Over time, these cartilaginous cells will divide, grow, and create a new layer of cartilage that will provide a cushion for the bones. This cellular implant is the most critical step in the cartilage repair process.
Watch YouTube Video: Cartilage Repair: Treatment Options for Active Adults. In the video below, Dr. Tom Minas with the Brigham and Women’s Hospital explains how cartilage repair can preserve joints from an injury or trauma.
Once this procedure has been completed, the individual will be monitored for several weeks to months. During this time, physical therapy will be performed to strengthen the injury site and ensure that the repair is as strong as possible. Repeat imaging might be performed to ensure that the cartilage is growing appropriately. With time, most individuals should make a full recovery after surgery. The surgical procedure can go a long way toward improving someone’s quality of life following a severe femur fracture.
Sacramento Femur Fracture Lawyer
I’m Ed Smith, a Sacramento femur fracture lawyer. Cartilage repair plays an essential process in the treatment of a femur fracture. If you or your family member has been diagnosed with a femur fracture due to the negligence of another individual or entity, please reach out to me today at (916) 921-6400 or (800) 404-5400 for free, friendly legal advice.