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Cartilage. 2010 Apr;1(2):78-86. doi: 10.1177/1947603510365533.

Microfracture: Its History and Experience of the Developing Surgeon.

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Steadman Philippon Research Institute, Vail, Colorado.


Development and implementation of the microfracture technique began in the early 1980s. The surgical goal was to produce "microfractures" in the subchondral bone perpendicular to the surface and to be able to reach all areas of the joint with the instruments. The microfracture technique has been demonstrated to be an effective arthroscopic treatment for full-thickness chondral lesions and joints with degenerative lesions. This technique is cost effective, technically not complicated, has an extremely low rate of associated patient morbidity, and leaves options for further treatment. Patient compliance with rehabilitation, knee alignment, and the depth of the cartilage rim surrounding the lesion are a few of the factors that can affect the outcomes following microfracture.


articular cartilage; knee; microfracture; outcome measures

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