Do Outcomes of Osteochondral Allograft Transplantation Differ Based on Age and Sex? A Comparative Matched Group Analysis

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The effect of patient age or sex on outcomes after osteochondral allograft transplantation (OCA) has not been assessed.


To determine clinical outcomes for male and female patients aged ≥40 years undergoing OCA compared with a group of patients aged <40 years.

Study Design:

Cohort study; Level of evidence, 3.


A review of prospectively collected data of consecutive patients who underwent OCA by a single surgeon with a minimum follow-up of 2 years was conducted. The reoperation rate, failure rate, and patient-reported outcome scores were reviewed. All outcomes were compared between patients aged <40 or ≥40 years, with subgroup analyses conducted based on patient sex. Failure was defined as revision OCA, conversion to knee arthroplasty, or gross appearance of graft failure at second-look arthroscopic surgery. Descriptive statistics, Fisher exact or chi-square testing, and Mann-Whitney U testing were performed, with P < .05 set as significant.


A total of 170 patients (of 212 eligible patients; 80.2% follow-up) who underwent OCA with a mean follow-up of 5.0 ± 2.7 years (range, 2.0-15.1 years) were included, with 115 patients aged <40 years (mean age, 27.6 ± 7.3 years; 58 male, 57 female) and 55 patients aged ≥40 years (mean age, 44.9 ± 4.0 years; 33 male, 22 female). There were no differences in the number of pre-OCA procedures between the groups (P = .085). There were no differences in the reoperation rate (<40 years: 38%; ≥40 years: 36%; P = .867), time to reoperation (<40 years: 2.12 ± 1.90 years; ≥40 years: 3.43 ± 3.43 years; P = .126), or failure rate (<40 years: 13%; ≥40 years: 16%; P = .639) between the older and younger groups. Patients in both groups demonstrated significant improvement in Lysholm (both: P < .001), International Knee Documentation Committee (IKDC) (both: P < .001), Knee Injury and Osteoarthritis Outcome Score (KOOS) (both: P < .001), Western Ontario and McMaster Universities Osteoarthritis Index (WOMAC) (both: P < .001), and Short Form–12 (SF-12) physical (both: P < .001) scores compared with preoperative values. Patients aged ≥40 years demonstrated significantly higher KOOS symptom (P = .015) subscores compared with patients aged <40 years. There were no significant differences in the number of complications, outcome scores, or time to failure between the sexes. In patients aged <40 years, female patients experienced failure significantly more quickly than male patients (P = .039). In contrast, in patients aged ≥40 years, male patients experienced failure significantly more quickly than female patients (P = .046).


This study provides evidence that OCA is a safe and reliable treatment option for osteochondral defects in patients aged ≥40 years. Male and female patients had similar outcomes. Patients aged <40 years demonstrated lower KOOS symptom subscores postoperatively compared with older patients, potentially attributable to higher expectations of return to function postoperatively as compared with older patients.

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