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What is a Meniscus Collagen Implant?

A meniscus collagen implant is a biocompatible scaffold that  is made of highly purified collagen which helps to reinforce a damaged knee meniscus and promote the growth of new tissue. The implant has the same shape as the human meniscus and can be trimmed by the surgeon to fit the size of the defect in the damaged meniscus.

Anatomy of the Meniscus

The meniscus is a C-shaped fibrous cartilage tissue present between the thighbone and the shinbone. Each knee has 2 menisci that help in stabilizing the knee joint and act as shock absorbers. Meniscus tears can result from excessive stress on the knee causing pain and loss of range of motion.

Indications for a Meniscus Collagen Implant

Indications for a meniscus collagen implant include:

  • Early osteoarthritic changes in the meniscus 
  • Trauma to the knee resulting in irreparable meniscal injury
  • Meniscus damage necessitating more than 25% removal of meniscal tissue

Contraindications for a Meniscus Collagen Implant

Contraindication for a meniscus collagen implant include:

  • Systemic or local infection
  • Osteonecrosis in the knee
  • Severe degenerative knee osteoarthritis 
  • History of multiple allergies 

Procedure for Meniscus Collagen Implant Placement 

The procedure for meniscus collagen implant placement involves the following steps:

  • Your doctor will instruct you to lie in supine position on your back with the knee flexed at 90 degrees.
  • Arthroscopic portals are placed near the kneecap to allow easy access to the target site.
  • Arthroscopic instruments are passed through the portals to trim the meniscus defect.
  • The defect is then measured, and based on this the CMI implant is trimmed.
  • The arthroscopic portal is enlarged surgically to accommodate the implant.
  • The meniscus collagen implant is sutured to the rim and the incisions are closed.

Post-operative Instructions for Meniscus Collagen Implant

Your surgeon will provide you with medications to relieve pain and advise you to apply ice to reduce inflammation. You will be expected to actively participate in a progressive physical therapy program to maximize knee mobility and function which can take about 3-6 months.

Risks and Complications of Meniscus Collagen Implant Placement

Meniscus collagen implant placement surgery is safe; however, as with any surgery there is a minimal risk of bleeding, infection, delayed healing, or implants failure.

Benefits of a Meniscus Collagen Implant

Results of several research studies have demonstrated that a meniscus collagen implant has resulted in significant and long-lasting improvement in knee mobility and function enabling patients to maintain an active lifestyle.