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Table 1 Gradation of the cartilage and synovial changes in non-calcified samples

From: Comparison of various SYSADOA for the osteoarthritis treatment: an experimental study in rabbits

Severity of cartilage pathology
Normal volume, smooth Surface, intact 0
Surface undulations. Superficial zone fissures 1
Middle zone fissures and/or superficial erosions 2
Deep zone fissures and/or erosion through mid zone 3
Full thickness loss of cartilage 4
Severity of chondrocyte pathology
Normal 0
Loos of superficial cells or relative increased density with occasional clusters 1
Small clusters (2–4 cells) predominate 2
Large clusters (up to 5 cells) predominate 3
Cell loss (necrosis/apoptosis) predominate 4
Severity of proteoglycan pathology
Normal 0
Decreased proteoglycan in the superficial zone 1
Decreased proteoglycan into the mid zone 2
Decreased proteoglycan into the deep zone 3
Full depth 4
Intact and distinct 0
Loss and/or duplication but distinct 1
Loss. Crossed by blood vessels 2
Lining cell characteristics
1-2 layers of cells 0
3-6 layers of cells 1
˃6 layers of cells 2
No hyperplasia 0
Short villi 1
Finger-like hyperplasia 2
Cell infiltration characteristics
No cellular infiltration 0
Mid to moderate inflammatory infiltration. Including small lymphoid follicles 1
Marked and diffuse inflammatory infiltration. Large lymphoid follicles. 2
  1. Parameters evaluated in the gradation of histologic features in decalcified paraffin embedded samples [37].