SPRINGER MEDIZIN / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY SPRINGER MEDIZIN / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY
Knee anatomy. Computer artwork of the legs, showing cartilage, ligaments and muscles. At centre right is the top of the tibia (shin bone). Its surface is covered by protective articular cartilage (white), which is itself partially covered by the menisci (cream, crescent-shaped), which act as shock absorbers. In the middle of the left knee is the anterior cruciate ligament, a fibrous band of connective tissue that connects the femur (thigh bone) and tibia and limits forwards movement of the joint. At bottom are the gastrocnemius muscles. At the back of thighs are the hamstring muscles and at the front are the quadriceps muscles.
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