Normal knee function requires a smooth, gliding articular cartilage surface on the ends of the bones. This surface is composed of a thin layer of slippery, tough tissue called hyaline cartilage, which also acts to distribute force during repetitive, pounding-like movements, such as jumping or running.
A severe knee cartilage injury can radically change an active adult's lifestyle. Symptoms such as locking, catching localized pain and swelling often affect your ability to work, play, and even perform normal activities.
A cartilage lesion appears as a hole or divot in the cartilage surface. Since cartilage has minimal ability to repair itself, even what may seem like a small lesion (ranging from the size of a dime to a quarter), if left untreated, can hinder your ability to move free from pain and cause deterioration to the joint surface.
Treatment with Autologous Cultured Chondrocytes on Porcine Collagen Membrane (MACI®):
Although cartilage is unable to repair itself on its own, advanced FDA-approved technology allows cartilage cells, known as chondrocytes, to be harvested from your knee, cultured, and multiplied. MACI, a procedure that repairs cartilage using the patient’s own cells, provides long-lasting pain relief and improvement in function.
How does MACI work?
A sample of your cartilage cells (chondrocytes) is sent to a laboratory and embedded on a special collagen membrane which your doctor then implants into your knee. The cartilage cells regenerate, forming a repair tissue that is able to fill the cartilage defect.
MACI has been proven to provide three important things:
A functional repair tissue
MACI produces a type of repair tissue that alleviates symptoms and restores joint function which has been shown to form as early as 6 months after the MACI procedure.
Reduced pain and improved function
In the SUMMIT clinical trial, MACI has been shown to offer greater pain relief and improvement in function when compared to microfracture.
In the SUMMIT clinical trial, MACI patients reported higher quality of life scores, a greater ability to perform recreational and sports activities, and improved overall knee function.1
Biopsy Taken: If your doctor thinks MACI may be an option for you, he or she will take a biopsy (a sample of tissue approximately the size of two Tic Tacs®) of your healthy knee cartilage.
Biopsy Processed: The biopsy is shipped to a state-of-the art, FDA-licensed cell-processing facility in Cambridge, Massachusetts, where it will be stored cryogenically (frozen).
Your Own Cells: In a proprietary process, cartilage cells are expanding and uniformly seeded onto a resorbable collagen membrane.
MACI Delivered: The MACI implant is delivered to the operating room on the day of your surgery.
MACI Implanted: Your surgeon will shape the MACI implant to the size of your cartilage defect(s) and then place it into your knee, affixing it to the damaged area.
After MACI is implanted, you will begin a physician-prescribed rehabilitation program specifically designed for you.
MACI should not be used in patients who cannot follow a doctor-prescribed rehabilitation program after their surgery.
Is MACI right for you? Consult your SCOI doctor to determine whether MACI is right for you.
For more information, please see www.maci.com.