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Doctors' Answers to "Frequently Asked Questions" - Osteonecrosis
Osteonecrosis [posted 8/6/98]
Answer: Unfortunately no. There is one small artery to the femoral head and once it is impaired, there is no way to restore blood flow. Once the cartilage dies, there is no recovery. There are experimental studies looking at regrowing cartilage, but there are no clinically effective treatments at this point. You might check with the NIH and see if there is an experimental protocol for hip necrosis and growing cartilage. Most of the research has been focused on the knee due to its higher frequency and ease of assessment.