Human Structure Virtual Histology
    Cartilage, Bone and Joints


    Joints are sites where adjacent bones are connected by connective tissues, cartilage and ligaments, that provide cushioning and/or facilitate movement.

    • Examine this section of a finger tip, which includes the nail bed and distal phalangeal synovial joint. Identify the elements indicated in the image to the right. Pay particular attention to the synovium, or synovial membrane, which is diagnostic for this type of joint.



    Clinical note: Articular cartilage begins to break down slowly as we age, potentially leading to inflammation associated with osteoarthritis. This process can be inhibited by regular exercise and full use of the joints because recurrent pressure on the cartilage and other parts of joints improves tissue maintenance. Injection of hyaluronan solution into the synovial cavity is a routine treatment for severe arthritis. Dietary supplementation with chondroitin sulfate and glucosamine may also slow progression of arthritis.


    Intervertebral joints

    Now try this self-assessment quiz, no one sees the score but you.

    Now let's consider blood cells and hematopoiesis.