Cartilage Damage Treatment in Lafayette, LA
Cartilage is a flexible tissue that lines joints. Articular cartilage covers moving surfaces and allows bones to glide smoothly against each other. A meniscus is another type of cartilage that absorbs shock in the knees and helps support the body’s weight.
A sudden impact or quick twist of a joint can cause cartilage to rip or tear. Cartilage damage can also develop gradually through ongoing wear and tear, causing a condition known as osteoarthritis. The latter is often associated with aging.
What Are the Signs of Cartilage Damage?
The symptoms of cartilage damage can include:
- Reduced range of motion
- Joint deformity
- A catching, locking, or clicking sensation
Regardless of whether cartilage damage results from sudden trauma or gradual erosion, the symptoms are usually the same. However, the treatment approach can vary based on the underlying cause.
How Is Cartilage Damage Treated?
Cartilage does not heal as well as most other tissues in the body. Because cartilage cells (chondrocytes) do not often replicate or repair themselves, medical intervention is usually required.
In many cases, cartilage damage can be effectively treated with rest, ice applications, physical therapy, and nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs). A conservative treatment approach may be especially well-suited for a moderately active individual. On the other hand, an athlete or another highly active individual might consider surgical treatment to physically repair, remove, or replace the damaged tissue. For instance, torn cartilage may be surgically reattached to itself or to the bone, while cartilage that has worn away over time may need to be replaced with an implant (a joint replacement).
Whom Can You Talk With About Cartilage Damage Treatment?
Peter D. Vizzi, MD, is a board-certified orthopedic surgeon and dedicated orthopedist who can help you learn about your treatment options for cartilage damage and decide on the best approach for your condition. To schedule an appointment with Dr. Vizzi at his office in Lafayette, Louisiana, contact us today.