Articular cartilage repair is the improvement of defects of the joint cartilage, either by surgery or biological intervention.



Microfracture - a marrow stimulation technique, where holes are picked through the cartilage base plate, to allow blood and cells to track through into the defect.


In ACI - a cell-based therapy - cartilage cells are multiplied in the laboratory and injected into the defect behind a membrane.


Cartilage repair is part of regenerative medicine

There is a lot of focus currently on regenerative techniques for restoring damaged joint cartilage. Procedures include microfracture, nanofracture, ACI, mosaicplasty, MACI, AMIC, NAMIC, stem cell injections and microfragmented fat injections.

Cartilage repair

A video interview with knee surgeon Peter Thompson regarding cartilage repair options



Clinical articular cartilage repair—an up to date review. Brittberg M. Annals of joint. 2018. Vol 3. (

Cell-Based Articular Cartilage Repair: The Link between Development and Regeneration. Caldwell KL and Wang J. Osteoarthritis Cartilage. 2015 Mar; 23(3): 351–362.

Cartilage repair in the degenerative ageing knee. Brittberg M, Gomoll AH, Canseco JA, Farr J, Lind M and Hui J. Acta Orthop. 2016 Dec; 87(Suppl 363): 26–38.

See also -

eBook on alternatives to joint replacement

eBook - Knee arthritis interventions when you are too young for a total knee replacement

Easy-to-read eBook discussing the various options for arthritis in the younger patient.