Cartilage Transplant Surgery By Dr. Debashish Chanda
A 45-year-old male patient came to the Orthopaedic Department at CK Birla Hospital, Gurugram with persisting pain in his legs. The patient had a fracture in his leg 10 years ago, and the same area was now causing pain again. He could not sit for too long in one stride, as his leg would get locked and jammed, making it difficult for him to walk. His previous orthopaedic had suggested total knee replacement, but the patient waited another year before finally approaching Dr Debashish Chanda.
Investigation and Analysis
The patient underwent a full screening, including an alignment scanogram and a Cartilage Sequence MRI. The report revealed a very mild varus alignment issue and severe cartilage damage.
In such cases, healthcare providers often ignore cartilage damage and suggest knee replacement at a later, more mature age. However, it is always desirable to preserve one’s natural knee and tissue, even if this is a more laborious procedure requiring a skillful hand. The outcome of this procedure has a more lasting impact if executed successfully. Upon careful evaluation, the team decided to proceed with Cartilage Transplant Surgery along with other reconstructive procedures depending on the outcome of the first procedure.
Treatment and Management
Varus Knee is a condition where the alignment of the bones in the leg and knee are affected. Even a millimetre shift can result in a lot of pain. During the cartilage transplant procedure, the patient’s own cartilage cells were taken from the same knee, grown in a lab for six months, and then placed back in the final surgery with an alignment change. This implanted cartilage adhered to the bone and formed connective tissue, filling the defect completely within a few weeks.
The operation was successful, and the team finally performed alignment correction and cartilage transplant through grafting.
Post Operative Care
Post-surgery, the patient did not require an ICU stay. The review revealed that his cartilage defect had grown back in three months. The patient was able to get back on his feet and walk within the next 24 hours. With effective rehab exercises, he was able to move his leg around comfortably, even with light weights. With the right technique, the team restored the functionality of the patient’s legs and completely healed his condition in under 6 months.
The surgery was performed to ensure that the patient could retain their own natural body and get rid of the pain that prevented them from leading a normal life. We are glad our efforts have given the patient a new lease on life. He is back to his active life and is really happy with the procedure.