The 'anterior interval' is the region of the knee between the fat pad and the front of the tibia bone (anterior tibial plateau) and the patellar tendon.

anterior interval
When the keyhole surgeon looks at the anterior compartment from above, the fat pad is attached to the anterior horns of the menisci, and to the intermeniscal ligament.  During an arthroscopy, the surgeon can lift up the intermeniscal ligament with a probe, and enter the anterior interval, with the tibia behind.


The importance of the anterior interval

The anterior interval is one of those areas of the knee that can become locked up with adhesions, resulting in a stiff knee. In this case the surgeon may undertake an 'anterior interval' release, to free the adhesions.


Arthrofibrosis and Patella Baja

This ebook explains how an abnormally low kneecap result from the inflammatory condition of arthrofibrosis

Anterior interval arthrofibrosis

A brief look at how the kneecap can become tethered by scarring in the region of the 'anterior interval'.

The anterior interval

An explanation of the very important gap under the patellar tendon

Dr Peter Millett discusses why knee surgeons need to be aware that arthrofibrotic scarring can occur in this area because of the position of their arthroscopic portals (cuts).



Surgical Technique for Release of Anterior Interval Scarring of the Knee After Anterior Cruciate Ligament Reconstruction Rose M, McNeilan R, Genuario J and Schlegel T. Arthrosc Tech. 2018 Sep; 7(9): e887–e891.

See also -