Expert Care for Knee Pain

If you’re suffering with knee pain and instability, our team of sports medicine physicians can help. Board-certified sports medicine doctors at University Hospitals are highly skilled in the diagnostics and treatment of any sports injury, including torn cartilage. Our goal is your goal - to minimize your knee cartilage injury symptoms and allow you to return to your active lifestyle.

Best Surgical Options for Knee Cartilage Tears or Knee Injuries

Cartilage cannot repair or replace itself, so our orthopaedic surgeons at University Hospitals offer several options for torn cartilage repair:

  • Implanting your own healthy cartilage cells into the damaged area
  • Arthroscopic surgery to remove or repair pieces of torn cartilage

When surgery is the best knee cartilage damage treatment path, our orthopaedic surgeons and sports medicine physicians collaborate to determine the best option for each patient’s individual goals. Our experts in minimally invasive surgical interventions can repair the injury and offer you faster healing, less bleeding, and a speedier recovery.

High-Level Imaging Used for Knee Cartilage Injury

With a comprehensive physical examination and manipulation of the joint, we provide state-of-the-art imaging at University Hospitals. Our experts use full imaging capabilities to diagnose cartilage tears and associated ligament tears or fractures. Some of the imaging tests we use for possible cartilage tears include:

  • Computed tomography (CT): Creates detailed images of bones, soft tissues and blood vessels to determine injury extent.
  • Computed tomography arthrography: Specifically for cartilage injuries and cartilage tears, this image test provides accurate three-dimensional reconstructions of cartilage.
  • Magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) scans: Can show small tears and areas of tendon, ligament, cartilage or other muscle injury.
  • Magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) arthrography
  • Ultrasound: Using radio waves, this test can be used to show the extent of a cartilage injury as well as other tissues in the knee.
  • X-rays: Can be used to rule out fractures.

Understanding the Causes of Knee Cartilage Injury

There are many causes of acute or chronic knee pain, including:

  • Arthritis 
  • Bursitis 
  • Cartilage problems
  • Chronic infection
  • Cystic lesions around the joint
  • Osteonecrosis (avascular necrosis)
  • Stress fractures
  • Tendon issues

Specialists at University Hospitals conduct a thorough exam to rule out more serious problems and focus on the actual cause of your knee pain or knee instability. This allows them to understand if you have a sprain, or a partial or complete cartilage tear.