If you are reading this blog you may know that tendon injuries are one of the most common sports-related injuries. In fact, the number of knee ligament reconstruction procedures in the United States is projected to reach 500,000 in 2016.1
Allograft tendons are commonly used to repair a damaged ligament or tendon.
A quick refresher… allografts are human tissues recovered from deceased donors and then used to help heal patients with debilitating conditions. While allografts can come in the form of bone, skin, cartilage and cells, what we are discussing today is tendons.
New study shows graft processing matters.
Kaiser Permanente’s retrospective study and associated paper titled Revision Risk After Allograft Anterior Cruciate Ligament Reconstruction: Graft and Patient Associations is the largest known study of its kind. Some details:
- Conducted on 5,968 primary ACL reconstruction cases
- Used allografts processed with varied techniques such as irradiation doses, Allowash®, AlloTrue™ and BioCleanse®, which are proprietary cleansing processes from several allograft providers
- Median age of the patients at the time of surgery was 34.1-years-old
- 8% of the patients were male
The study found BioCleanse® graft processing, younger patient age, Bone-Patellar Tendon-Bone (BPTB) allografts and irradiation over 1.8 Mrad were all associated with a higher risk of clinical failure and subsequent revision surgery.
AlloSource’s AlloTrue™ preserves allograft safety and quality.
Tissue banks use different processes to preserve the safety and quality of their allografts and AlloSource® tendons are treated with irradiation doses between .95-1.4 Mrad, which means according to this study, our extra irradiation step to preserve safety does not affect the quality of the tendons. Additionally, AlloTrue™, AlloSource’s proprietary cleansing process designed to penetrate deep within donor tissue to remove blood and lipids and reduce bioburden, was not associated with a higher risk of clinical failure.
To use, or not to use, an allograft tendon.
Surgeons are the best resource for determining the right solution for patients. If an allograft tendon is part of that choice, AlloSource allografts can give the patient and surgeon peace of mind. After all, everyone involved has the same goal of getting the patient back in the game of life!
- Knee Ligament Replacement Grafts – U.S., BioMedGPS, March 2015