Proper Cartilage Status for Meniscal Allograft Transplantation Cannot Be Accurately Determined

Purpose: To evaluate if pre-operative patient clinical evaluation scores accurately reflect the cartilage status in a patient who has undergone a lateral meniscectomy and has progressed to lateral meniscal allograft transplantation.


  • 113 consecutive patients underwent lateral MAT and completed the most common patient-reported outcome measures: VAS, IKDC Subjective, Lysholm and Tegner Activity Scale.
  • More than half of the patients had high-grade cartilage degeneration at time of surgery even though their VAS pain scores were low
  • The majority of the patients did not experience significant pain during light activities
  • Could not find a difference in scores between patients with low-grade and high-grade cartilage degradation except with the Lysholm test (mean score only differed by 5.5 points)
  • The most commonly used outcome measures are not helpful in assessing the degree of cartilage damage


Take Away: Mild or tolerable symptoms did not always mean that the articular cartilage was well preserved; more observation should be undergone to determine possible chondral damage pre-operatively.

Authors: Bum-Sik Lee, Seong-Il Bin, Jong-Min Kim, Jae Hyan Kim and Geun-Won Han

Published: "Proper Cartilage Status for Meniscal Allograft Transplantation Cannot Be Accurately Determined". The American Journal of Sports Medicine. 2016 Mar;44(3):646-51.                                

Level of Evidence: III

Institution: University of Ulsan, Asan Medical Center, Seoul, South Korea

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