Microfracture is a surgical
technique that has been developed to treat chondral
defects, which are damaged areas of articular cartilage
of the knee. It is a common procedure used to treat patients
with full thickness damage to the articular cartilage that goes
all the way down to the bone.
This arthroscopic procedure was
first introduced about 20 years ago as a treatment method
that uses the body's own healing abilities and provides
an enriched environment for tissue regeneration on the chondral
Since its development, the microfracture
procedure has been used by its originator to treat more than
2000 patients. Of these patients, 75 to 80% experienced significant
pain relief and improvement in the ability to perform daily
activities and participate in sports. Fifteen percent noticed
no change, and five percent continued to have joint deterioration.