The meniscus is a unique fibrocartilaginous structure with a crescent or sickle shape. There are many menisci in the body, though people most often use the term to refer to the lateral and medial menisci in the knee joints. Each meniscus varies slightly from the others in shape, size, or structure. The name comes from an Ancient Greek word meaning "crescent," and some medical texts refer to the menisci as "semilunar cartilages."


1. Meniscus Locations

Other than those in the knees, the menisci are only rarely medically or clinically significant. The main joints with menisci are the knees and wrists, though many smaller joints have them as well:

  • The acromioclavicular joint in the junction between the scapula and the clavicle.
  • The sternoclavicular joint in the chest between the manubrium and the clavicle.
  • The temporomandibular joints that connect the jawbone to the skull.
temporomandibular joint meniscus Shidlovski / Getty Images

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