Cartilage. 2022 Oct 28:19476035221126343. doi: 10.1177/19476035221126343. Online ahead of print.
OBJECTIVE: The aim of this study was to investigate early radiological and clinical outcome of autologous minced cartilage treatment as a single-step treatment option in patients with a chondral or osteochondral lesion (OCL) in the knee.
DESIGN: Eighteen patients with an OCL in the knee were included. Cartilage from healthy-appearing loose bodies and/or the periphery of the defect were minced into small chips and sealed in the defect using fibrin glue. Preoperatively, and at 3 (n = 14) and 12 (n = 18) months follow-up, magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) was performed. The Magnetic Resonance Observation of Cartilage Repair Tissue (MOCART) 2.0 score was used to assess the cartilage repair tissue on MRI at 12 months. The International Knee Documentation Score, Knee Injury and Osteoarthritis Outcome Score, EuroQoL-5D, and Visual Analogue Scale pain were collected preoperatively and 12 months after surgery.
RESULTS: Three months postoperative, MRI showed complete defect filling in 11 out of 14 patients. Mean MOCART 2.0 score at 12 months was 65.0 ± 18.9 with higher scores for lateral femoral chondral lesions compared to medial femoral chondral lesions (75.8 ± 14.3, 52.5 ± 15.8 respectively, P = 0.02). Clinical and statistical significant improvements were observed in the patient-reported outcome measures at 12 months postoperatively compared to preoperatively.
CONCLUSION: Treatment of OCLs using the autologous minced cartilage procedure resulted in good cartilage repair measured by MOCART 2.0. Clinically relevant improvements were observed in the clinical scores. This study suggests autologous minced cartilage as a promising, single-step treatment for OCLs.