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Child Orthopedics
Spine - Cervical
Spine - Lumbar
Spine - Thoracic

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I read an article about replacing torn or damaged knee joint cartilage. Are there any side effects or problems after this surgery?

Implanting cartilage cells to replace cartilage defects is a relatively new operation. Itís been used in humans since 1994. At first, doctors opened the joint to insert the new cartilage, but now they can do this through a closed method. This is done with an arthroscope, a long needle with a TV camera on the end. The arthroscope is inserted into the joint, which allows the doctor to see inside the joint. The joint is prepared for the new tissue. The implanted cartilage is inserted through the arthroscope and stitched in place. The open method had many problems. More than a quarter of all patients had serious problems afterwards. Today, with arthroscopy, there are fewer adhesions, less scar tissue, and less pain. After the operation, the patient also has more motion. Early rehab is important to the success of this operation. Some doctors advise early motion. The patient must limit how much weight is placed on the joint. Crutches are used during the early post-operative phase.


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