Humeral Head Reconstruction With Osteochondral Allograft Transplantation.


Journal Article (Review)

PURPOSE: To synthesize, in a systematic review, the available clinical evidence of osteochondral allograft transplants for large osteochondral defects of the humeral head. METHODS: The Medline, Embase, and Cochrane databases were searched for studies reporting clinical or radiographic outcomes of osteochondral allograft transplantation for humeral head defects. Descriptive statistics were provided for all outcomes. After checking for data normality, we compared postoperative and preoperative values using the Student t test. RESULTS: We included 12 studies (8 case reports and 4 case series) in this review. The study group consisted of 35 patients. The mean age was 35.4 ± 18.1 years; 77% of patients were male patients. Thirty-three patients had large Hill-Sachs lesions due to instability, 1 had an osteochondritis dissecans lesion, and 1 had an iatrogenic lesion after resection of synovial chondromatosis. The mean lesion size was 3 ± 1.4 cm (anteroposterior) by 2.25 ± 0.3 cm (medial-lateral), representing on average 40.5% ± 4.73% of the native articular surface. Of the 35 patients, 3 received a fresh graft, with all others receiving frozen grafts. Twenty-three femoral heads, 10 humeral heads, and 2 sets of osteochondral plugs were used. The mean length of follow-up was 57 months. Significant improvements were seen in forward flexion at 6 months (68° ± 18.1°, P < .001), forward flexion at 12 months (83.42° ± 18.3°, P < .001), and external rotation at 12 months (38.72° ± 18.8°, P < .001). American Shoulder and Elbow Surgeons scores improved by 14 points (P = .02). Radiographic studies at final follow-up showed allograft necrosis in 8.7% of cases, resorption in 36.2%, and glenohumeral arthritic changes in 35.7%. Complication rates were between 20% and 30%, and the reoperation rate was 26.67%. Although only 3 patients received fresh allografts, there were no reports of graft resorption, necrosis, or arthritic changes in these patients. CONCLUSIONS: Humeral head allograft-most commonly used in the setting of large Hill-Sachs lesions due to instability-has shown significant improvements in shoulder motion and American Shoulder and Elbow Surgeons scores as far as 1 year postoperatively. Return-to-work rates and satisfaction levels are high after the intervention. Complication and reoperation rates are substantial, although it is possible that use of fresh allograft tissue may result in less resorption and necrosis. LEVEL OF EVIDENCE: Level V, systematic review of Level IV and V studies.

Full Text

Duke Authors

Cited Authors

  • Saltzman, BM; Riboh, JC; Cole, BJ; Yanke, AB

Published Date

  • September 2015

Published In

Volume / Issue

  • 31 / 9

Start / End Page

  • 1827 - 1834

PubMed ID

  • 25979686

Pubmed Central ID

  • 25979686

Electronic International Standard Serial Number (EISSN)

  • 1526-3231

Digital Object Identifier (DOI)

  • 10.1016/j.arthro.2015.03.021


  • eng

Conference Location

  • United States