Correlation between articular cartilage status on outcomes and survivorship following meniscal allograft transplantation: A systematic review

Varun Gopinatth, Alec A. Warrier, Harkirat S. Jawanda, Enzo S. Mameri, Zeeshan A. Khan, Sachin Allahabadi, Derrick M. Knapik, Brian J. Cole, Jorge Chahla

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Purpose: To conduct a systematic review evaluating potential correlations between preoperative articular cartilage integrity on outcomes and survivorship in patients undergoing meniscal allograft transplantation (MAT). Methods: A literature search was performed by querying SCOPUS, PubMed, Medline, and the Cochrane Central Register for Controlled Trials from database inception through May 2023 according to the 2020 PRISMA statement. Inclusion criteria were limited to studies reporting on outcomes and survivorship following MAT based on preoperative cartilage status. Results: Sixteen studies, consisting of 1723 patients (n = 1758 total menisci), were identified in six level III and 10 level IV evidence studies. There was high heterogeneity in cartilage grading scales, reporting of concomitant cartilage procedures, and indications for MAT based on osteoarthritis. Patients with lower limb malalignment were either excluded or corrected with an osteotomy. MAT failure rate was reported in nine studies, with four studies reporting a greater rate of failure in knees with higher degrees of cartilage damage. Eight studies reported on clinical outcomes based on cartilage grade, with two studies reporting significant differences in clinical outcomes based on cartilage grade. Of the five studies reporting management of full-thickness chondral defects with cartilage surgery, three studies reported no significant difference in survivorship based on preoperative cartilage grade, while one study reported lower survivorship and one study reported unclear results. No studies found significant differences in survivorship and outcomes between medial and lateral MAT. Conclusions: Conflicting results and high variability in reporting of concomitant cartilage repair and indications for MAT exist in studies evaluating the efficacy of MAT based on articular cartilage status. The degree of preoperative chondral damage did not have a strong relationship with clinical outcomes following MAT. Higher degrees of cartilage damage were associated with higher MAT failure rates, with possible improvement in survivorship when treated with an appropriate cartilage procedure. Level of Evidence: Level IV.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)623-635
Number of pages13
JournalKnee Surgery, Sports Traumatology, Arthroscopy
Issue number3
StatePublished - Mar 2024


  • cartilage
  • chondral
  • meniscus
  • meniscus allograft transplantation
  • outcomes
  • Follow-Up Studies
  • Osteotomy
  • Humans
  • Musculoskeletal Diseases
  • Cartilage, Articular/surgery
  • Menisci, Tibial/transplantation
  • Survivorship
  • Allografts/transplantation

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Surgery
  • Orthopedics and Sports Medicine


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