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Cartilage Surgery

As a fellowship trained sports medicine surgeon, Dr. Pearle has a special interest in advancing the care of athletic knee injuries. Dr. Pearle is Editor-in-Chief of the journal Techniques in Knee Surgery and a team physician for the New York Mets. Dr. Pearle performs all his surgeries at the Hospital for Special Surgery, the #1 ranked orthopedic center in the country.

Cartilage is a tissue that covers the end of the bone and prevents bones from grinding against each other. As such, cartilage acts as a shock absorber, cushioning the joint during active motion. Cartilage lesions can cause pain and clicking inside the knee joint, and are often associated with damage to the underlying bone.

Dr. Pearle performs surgery to resurface cartilage lesions when conservative treatment fails. The technique varies depending on the size and location of the cartilage lesions.

Dr. Pearle feels strongly that patient education is essential for optimal outcome. The videos below demonstrate the surgical techniques for cartilage resurfacing using either autograft (your own tissue) or allograft (cadaver tissue). In some cases, Dr. Pearle will use synthetic plugs to resurface cartilage. This procedure is identical to the allograft transplant; however, synthetic tissue is used instead of cadaveric tissue. If considering surgery, please view the appropriate animation. Please also read through the Frequently Asked Questions, Risks, and other related information on the section to the right.

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