About Cartilage Regeneration and Osteoarthritis
Osteoarthritis is the most common joint disease in humans. Conventional treatment is aimed at reducing pain, maintaining mobility and minimizing disability. Knee replacement is usually reserved for more severely damaged knees in older patients because of the potential need for revision surgery when knee replacement is performed on younger, more active patients.
Localized cartilage damage or cartilage lesions of the knee can lead to early osteoarthritis. Some orthopedists feel that these should be treated with biologic reconstruction as soon as possible. Existing techniques generally have better results for small unipolar lesions where just one bone of the knee is involved. Bipolar or "bone-on-bone" lesions that involve more than one knee bone do not typically respond as well to treatment. Also, these available procedures generally produce abnormal, rough cartilage instead of the desired, normal, flexible and smooth hyaline cartilage.
Building off of research pioneered by Dr. Khay Yong Saw, Dr. Broyles has been treating patients with knee cartilage loss with a procedure called Biologic Augmented Microdrilling (BAM) since 2011. BAM is a biologic treatment for regenerating cartilage, and it is applicable to patients with bone-on-bone and large area cartilage loss.