HealthDay News — Common conditions are keeping many patients from participating in knee cartilage research studies, according to a review published online May 30 in npj Regenerative Medicine.

Anthony R. Martn, from the Perelman School of Medicine at the University of Pennsylvania in Philadelphia, and colleagues conducted a systematic review of cartilage repair clinical trials to identify common exclusion criteria and reviewed the literature to identify emerging regenerative approaches that are poised to overcome these current exclusion criteria.

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Based on exclusion criteria from 33 trials, the researchers determined that more than half of the trials included the following as exclusion criteria: age <18 or >55 years old, small defects (<1 cm²), large defects (>8 cm²), multiple defects (more than two lesions), body mass index >35 kg/m², meniscectomy (>50 percent), bilateral knee pathology, ligamentous instability, arthritis, malalignment, previous repair, kissing lesions, neurologic disease of lower extremities, inflammation, infection, endocrine or metabolic disease, drug or alcohol abuse, pregnancy, and history of cancer. Emerging tissue engineering and regenerative approaches may foster cartilage repair to overcome these exclusion criteria.

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“The identified criteria exclude a majority of the affected population from treatment, and thus greater focus must be placed on these emerging cartilage regeneration techniques to treat patients with the challenging ‘red knee,'” the authors write.

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