Cartilage inflammation can occur anywhere in the body, although it is most common in cartilaginous ribs; It occurs at the ends of the bones, and in the outer ear as a result of trauma or after a burn injury. Bacterial infection may be associated with inflammation. It is an autoimmune disorder in which inflammation affects various parts of the cartilage throughout the body.
Sometimes, articular cartilage can be confusing because there are three types of cartilage in the body: pain: articular or cartilaginous cartilage (covering joint surfaces), fibrous cartilage cartilage (knee meniscus, spinal disc), and Elastic or elastic cartilage (outer ear). These different cartilages can be distinguished by differences in their flexibility, strength, and structure.
In some joints, such as the knee joint, there are both fibrous cartilage and articular cartilage that are located side by side and are completely different in structure and function. When the meniscus is damaged, it is called a “cartilage rupture” or “meniscus rupture.” This discussion is quite separate from our discussion of joint-surface cartilage problems.
Articular cartilage is a living, complex tissue that covers the bony surface of the joint. The function of articular cartilage is to create an abrasive surface for the joint to be able to support the human weight when performing movements that are necessary for daily activities as well as exercises for athletes. Daily activities include walking, going up and down stairs, and work-related activities. In other words, articular cartilage is a very narrow shock absorber. It consists of five completely separate layers, each with its own biochemical and structural differences.
How is articular cartilage damaged?
Articular cartilage damage is the result of a shocking mechanical breakdown, or progressive mechanical organ failure (wear and tear). In mechanical destruction, a direct blow or any other injury can damage the articular cartilage. Depending on the extent of the damage and the location of the injury, sometimes articular cartilage cells can be rehabilitated. Because there is no blood in the articular cartilage, it is difficult to rehabilitate on its own. If the injury penetrates the bone beneath the cartilage, some blood reaches the area through the same lower bone, which increases the chances of rehabilitation.
Occasionally, part of the articular cartilage separates completely from the underlying bone. This condition, called soft body disease, can also affect the joint and interfere with normal joint movements.
Mechanical dislocation (wear and tear) of articular cartilage occurs when we experience a lack of articular cartilage with normal function and structure. This initial loss begins with the softening of the cartilage and progresses to the stage of disintegration and destruction. When this loss of articular cartilage continues, this normal wear and tear prevents daily activities from protecting the underlying bone, so that the bone begins to break, leading to swollen joints.
Swelling of the joints, like erosive joint disease, has three stages:
- Progressive loss of cartilage
- The body tries to repair this cartilage
- Destruction of the underlying bone of articular cartilage
The cause of swollen joints is not fully understood, but continued use of normal joints throughout the life does not increase the risk of developing the disease. Factors such as severe sprain injuries, abnormal joint anatomy, joint instability, low muscle strength, and some medical and genetic factors all contribute to this.
What are the symptoms of articular cartilage damage?
In most cases, the patient has swollen knees, feels slight pain, and it is not possible to use that point continuously. If a soft object problem occurs, terms such as clogging and locking can also be used to describe the problem. With the problem of mechanical organ failure (wear and tear), the patient usually experiences a slight stiffness, pain and swelling of the joints and will not be able to fully perform normal body movements.
How is joint cartilage damage diagnosed?
By examining the knee, instability, pain, and swelling in this area, the physician will consider abnormal bone alignment or meniscus damage and test for complete body movements. Diagnosis of articular cartilage damage is very difficult and may be arthroscopic or MRI evaluated.2 , Be necessary. X-rays are usually not suitable for diagnosing articular cartilage damage; But this is done to rule out other irregularities and problems.
When is surgery needed?
When a joint is damaged, the body secretes enzymes that later destroy the already damaged joint cartilage. Cartilage damage that does not extend to the bone usually does not heal on its own. Injuries to the bone may heal, but the cartilage used is structurally damaged and will not work as well as the original articular cartilage. Injuries smaller than two centimeters are best for healing. In cases where arthroscopic surgery is required, special methods (drilling and pick procedure) are used to remove the damaged cartilage and increase blood flow to the bone beneath the cartilage. Smaller joint cartilage lesions that are asymptomatic do not require surgery. For larger injuries, cartilage grafts from other areas of the knee joint may be needed. Be sure to consult your doctor to decide on the need for surgery. Patients with joint swelling require non-surgical treatments that include physiotherapy, lifestyle changes (such as reducing normal daily activities), hanging, protective equipment, injectable and oral medications (such as nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs, and medications). Prevention of cartilage damage) and medical management are necessary. Surgical procedures are very special for cases where the swelling of the joint is very serious and reduce the symptoms of the disease, which are also short-lived. Thigh and tibial bone grafts to restore balance in cases of joint erosion may reduce the symptoms of the disease and help the patient to resume an active daily life, delaying the need for a full joint transplant. A complete joint transplant eliminates the symptoms of advanced joint swelling, but usually requires a change in the patient’s lifestyle and level of daily activities.