Bones require nutrients from the blood to remain healthy. When the blood supply is interrupted, areas of bone can be damaged. Osteochondritis dissecans is a bone disease that can impact the knee joint, affecting the lower end of the femur. Dr. Steven Struhl at Shoulders & Knees offers osteochondritis dissecans treatments at our clinics in NYC and Westchester.
Osteochondritis dissecans usually impacts the lower femoral condyles, which are the rounded ends of the thigh bone. This disease is caused by a lack of blood supply to one or both femoral condyles, resulting in the bone surface under the cartilage dying. These areas of dead bone are referred to as osteochondritis lesions. These lesions usually occur at the highest-pressure points on the femoral condyle. Over time, the dead and damaged bone can fragment, becoming a loose body in the knee.
Symptoms of Osteochondritis Dissecans
Children and teens can experience juvenile osteochondritis dissecans, which can lead to adult osteochondritis dissecans, or OCD. Symptoms include:
- Aching knee pain that grows worse
- Swelling of the knee
- Pain with movement or weight bearing on the knee
- Tenderness to the touch
The symptoms can be similar to a sprain or knee strain injury but continues to worsen instead of healing over time. If the bone fractures, loose bodies in the knee can cause a catching sensation with movement.
Juvenile OCD can often be treated without surgery, restoring blood flow to the bone, which can heal lesions. In adult cases of OCD, surgery may be required to reattach bone fragments or perform an allograft or autograft transplant of bone and cartilage to the area.
Dr. Steven Struhl is one of the top orthopedic surgeons and knee specialists in the country. If you or your child are suffering from knee pain related to osteochondritis dissecans, contact our clinic in NYC or Westchester. Dr. Struhl can discuss your treatment options to give you relief for your knee pain.