Menisci are crucial structures in the knee joint as they play important functions in load transfer, maintaining joint stability and in homeostasis of articular cartilage. Unfortunately, ones of the most frequently occurring knee injuries are meniscal tears. Particularly tears in the avascular zone of the meniscus usually do not heal spontaneously and lead to pain, swelling and locking of the knee joint. Eventually, after a (partial) meniscectomy, they will lead to osteoarthritis. Current treatment modalities to repair tears and by that restore the integrity of the native meniscus still carry their drawbacks and a new robust solution is desired. A strong tissue adhesive could provide such a solution and could potentially improve on sutures, which are the current gold standard. Moreover, a glue could serve as a carrier for biological compounds known to enhance tissue healing. Only few tissue adhesives, e.g., Dermabond® and fibrin glue, are already successfully used in clinical practice for other applications, but are not considered suitable for gluing meniscus tissue due to their sub-optimal mechanical properties or toxicity. There is a growing interest and research field focusing on the development of novel polymer-based tissue adhesives, but up to now, there is no material specially designed for the repair of meniscal tears. In this review, we discuss the current clinical gold standard treatment of meniscal tears and present an overview of new developments in this field. Moreover, we discuss the properties of different tissue adhesives for their potential use in meniscal tear repair. Finally, we formulate recommendations regarding the design criteria of material properties and adhesive strength for clinically applicable glues for meniscal tears.
|Journal||Journal of materials science. Materials in medicine|
|Publication status||Published - 2016|