The temporal sequence of spontaneous repair of osteochondral defects in the knees of rabbits is dependent on the geometry of the defect

S. A. Lietman, S. Miyamoto, P. R. Brown, N. Inoue, A. H. Reddi
2002 The Journal of Bone and Joint Surgery  
D amage to articular cartilage is a common injury, for which there is no effective treatment. Our aims were to investigate the temporal sequence of the repair of articular cartilage and to define a critical-size defect. Full-thickness defects were made in adult male New Zealand white rabbits. The diameter (1 to 4 mm) of the defects was varied in order to determine the effect that the size and depth of the defect had on its healing. The defects were made in the femoral groove of the knee with
more » ... defect per knee and eight knees per group. The tissues were fixed in formalin at days 3, 7, 14, 21, 28, 42, 84 and 126 after operation and the sections stained with Toluidine Blue. These were then examined and evaluated for several parameters including the degree of metachromasia and the amount of subchondral bone which had reformed in the defect. The defects had a characteristic pattern of healing which differed at different days and for different sizes of defect. Specifically, the defects of 1 mm first peaked in terms of metachromasia at day 21, those of 2 mm at day 28, followed by defects of 3 mm and 4 mm. The healing of the subchondral bone was slowest in defects of 1 mm.
doi:10.1302/0301-620x.84b4.11631 pmid:12043787 fatcat:f2n5uoizqreg7czxf2jxpjd3hi