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Systematic Review of Clinical Results After Medial Meniscus Allograft Transplantation Reveals Improved Patient Reported Outcomes at Greater Than 5 Years Follow-Up

Published:December 07, 2022DOI:https://doi.org/10.1016/j.arthro.2022.11.033

      Purpose

      To systematically summarize the medial meniscus allograft transplantation (MAT) reported outcomes and evaluate whether the surgical technique is associated with allograft extrusion and knee function.

      Methods

      Systematic review was conducted according to PRISMA (Preferred Reporting Items for Systematic Reviews and Meta-Analyses) guidelines. Inclusion criteria were English-language clinical studies involving arthroscopically assisted medial MAT that reported the surgical technique and the presence of graft extrusion or functional outcomes after surgery. Studies in which outcomes for medial MAT could not be separated from lateral MAT were excluded. Surgical technique, allograft-related characteristics, and clinical outcomes were extracted.

      Results

      Twenty-four studies with 328 medial MAT were included, 58.3% studies qualified as level 4 of evidence, 29.2% as level 3, and 12.5% as level 2. Allograft fixation techniques were bone plug (235/328 [71.6%]), bone bridge/trough (55/328 [16.8%]), and soft-tissue suture fixation only (38/328 [11.6%]). Relative percentage of extrusion after surgery ranged from 24.8% to 53.7%. Major extrusion (>3 mm) ranged from zero to 78%. Overall, functional scores improved after medial MAT. None of surgical techniques were associated with poor functional outcomes or extruded meniscus; however, nonanatomical placement of the anterior and posterior horns appeared to increase meniscus extrusion.

      Conclusion

      Medial MAT provides favorable outcomes, with acceptable rates of complication and failure regardless of surgical technique. Although allograft extrusion appears equivalent for both bone plug and soft-tissue fixation techniques, positioning allograft horns at the native meniscal footprint may be critical for preventing extrusion. However, the heterogeneity and low level of evidence of the studies included in this review prevent decisive conclusions regarding optimal MAT fixation techniques, clinical significance of allograft extrusion, or comparative clinical outcomes after medial MAT.

      Level of Evidence

      Level IV - systematic review of Level II to IV studies.
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