A meniscus is a crescent-shaped fibrocartilaginous anatomical structure that only partly divides a joint cavity. This contrasts an articular disc. In humans they are present in the knee, wrist, acromioclavicular, sternoclavicular, and temporomandibular joints. In other animals they may be present in other joints.
Generally, the term "meniscus" is used to refer to the cartilage of the knee, either to the lateral or medial meniscus. Both are cartilaginous tissues that provide structural integrity to the knee when it undergoes tension and torsion. The menisci are also known as "semi-lunar" cartilages, referring to their half-moon, crescent shape.
The term "meniscus" is from the Ancient Greek word μηνίσκος (meniskos), meaning "crescent".
References[change | change source]
- Platzer (2004), p 208
- "Meniscus", Stedman's (27th ed.)
- Lexicon of Orthopaedic Etymology, p. 199