Scientific publications

Articular cartilage degeneration after frozen meniscus and Achilles tendon allograft transplantation: experimental study in sheep

Oct 1, 2003 | Magazine: Arthroscopy

Mora G., Álvarez E., Ripalda P., Forriol F.

The purpose of this study was to analyze cartilage degeneration in knees after total medial meniscectomy, transplantation of fresh-frozen meniscus allograft, and Achilles tendon allograft.

Experimental study.

We have studied the articular cartilage in the medial compartment of the left knees in 32 sheep aged 5 to 6 months, with 8 animals in each group. The study was performed after meniscectomy (group I), transplantation of fresh-frozen meniscus allograft (group II), use of fresh-frozen Achilles tendon allograft (group III), and in a control group (group IV).

For the histologic study, all samples were stained with Masson's trichrome and Safranine-O. Mankin's score was applied to grade the histologic damage to the articular cartilage.

The group with the greatest number of degenerative changes was group III, followed by groups I and II. The percentage of thickness of cartilage detected by Safranine-O stain was found to be significantly different in both tibia and femur between the control group and the other 3 groups, but not among groups I, II, and III.

The immunoreactivity of the articular surfaces in tibia and femur showed notable differences in all the groups. Collagen X was present in the degenerative hypertrophic chondrocytes in the damaged articular surfaces.

Meniscal replacement with meniscal and Achilles tendon allografts provides partial protection against articular damage after a meniscectomy.

CITATION  Arthroscopy. 2003 Oct;19(8):833-41