Musculoskeletal system injuries (including joints and articular cartilage) are the most common wound types seen in modern warfare, accounting for well over half of all wounds. Recent studies indicate that articular cartilage lesions are classified as either full or partial thickness, depending on whether they extend to the subchondral bone. Historically, articular cartilage has had a weak capacity for repair. Generally, the lesions that penetrate the subchondral bone (full-thickness defects) are repaired with various tissues from fibrous to fibrocartilage. However, reparative tissue, even histologically hyaline-like cartilage, lacks the biomechanical capabilities to express some cartilage-specific molecules, and its biomechanical durability is inferior to that of age-matched normal articular cartilage. Clinical procedures for repairing damaged articular cartilage have been attempted. Low-level laser therapy (LLLT) is broadly applied to the laser's therapeutic effects. The clinical application of LLLT is growing rapidly, and several reviews have been published. Since no reports have been published on the effect of a low-level He-Ne laser with a wavelength of 632.8 nm on healing large osteochondral defects in rabbits, this article examines the potential therapeutic effect of LLLT with an He-Ne laser on the histological parameters of healing a large osteochondral defect in rabbits.
Volume 46 Number 9, 2009
Pages 1135 — 1142