Arthroscopic osteochondral autograft transplantation in anterior cruciate ligament reconstruction: a preliminary clinical study

Knee Surg Sports Traumatol Arthrosc. 1996;3(4):262-4. doi: 10.1007/BF01466630.


The high incidence of chondral defects of the femoral condyles associated with chronic ACL tears is widely recognised. However, treatment is difficult and controversial. This preliminary report presents our experience with arthroscopic osteochondral autograft transplantation in ACL-deficient knees. The series consists of 12 cases of arthroscopic osteochondral autograft transplantation in conjunction with ACL reconstruction using bone-patellar tendon-bone autograft; eight procedures were primary, and four were revisions of failed synthetic grafts. The patients' ages ranged from 22 to 42 years. There were ten male and two female patients. Chondral lesions in this series ranged from 10 to 22 mm in diameter. Donor site was selected prior to notchplasty, and three to five osteochondral cylinders, 5-10 mm in diameter, 10-15 mm long, were harvested. Improved surgical technique, tubular cutting instruments enabling minimal damage to harvested articular cartilage, and press-fit insertion yielded promising uniform results in ten of 12 cases with 2 years' follow-up. This study addresses the important issue of articular cartilage defects in ACL-deficient knees and possible prevention of premature joint degeneration. The aim of arthroscopic osteochondral autograft transplantation is to slow down the development of osteoarthrosis.

Publication types

  • Clinical Trial

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Anterior Cruciate Ligament / surgery*
  • Arthroplasty / adverse effects*
  • Arthroscopy
  • Bone Transplantation / methods*
  • Cartilage, Articular / transplantation*
  • Endoscopy / methods
  • Female
  • Femur
  • Humans
  • Knee Joint / surgery*
  • Male
  • Osteoarthritis / etiology
  • Osteoarthritis / prevention & control
  • Osteochondritis Dissecans / complications
  • Osteochondritis Dissecans / etiology
  • Osteochondritis Dissecans / surgery*