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Articular meniscus

German: Meniscus articularis

1 Definition

The articular meniscus consists of fibrous cartilage and dense connective tissue whose fibers are aligned in a parallel way and divide the articular cavity into two compartments. Concerning the transversal slice, the joint body (discus articularis) appears wedge-shaped (cuneiform).

2 Histology

Menisci articulares are basically free from blood vessels. They are supplied with nutrients coming from the synovial fluid.

3 Occurrence

A typical example of menisci articulares are the fibrous discs in between the femur and tibial plateau, close to the knee joint.

4 Function

The menisci accomplish different functions in the joint:

  • they enlarge the surface of contact in between the parts of the joint
  • they compensate incongruity of the surfaces
  • they buffer the pressure which is applied onto the joint's surface and disseminate it
  • they support the conducting of the head of the joint inside of the joint's socket

5 Clinical significance

Due to their exposed location inside of the joint, a meniscopathy occurs quite often. A typical example is a fissure of the inner meniscus inside of the knee joint.

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Specialties: Anatomy

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