Osteochondral disease of the glenoid is a well-known cause of shoulder pain and disability in young and active patients. The etiology can be multifactorial, and disease severity can exist across a wide spectrum. Symptoms can often interfere with athletic performance, job responsibilities, and activities of daily living. Although a number of cartilage restoration techniques exist for other joints, such as the hip, knee, ankle, and elbow, restorative options for glenoid osteochondral defects are currently limited. Given the success of osteochondral allograft transplantation in other joints, the authors hypothesized that osteochondral allograft transplantation may be a reasonable option in treating osteochondral disease of the glenoid if a suitable donor source could be identified. After performing the procedure in a cadaveric model, the authors found the articular geometry of the medial tibial plateau to closely resemble that of the glenoid articular surface. This graft option is advantageous because it is readily accessible from allograft tissue banks, whereas glenoid allografts are not currently available. After failure of extensive nonoperative treatment, a former multisport athlete underwent osteochondral allograft transplantation of a large glenoid defect with a medial tibial plateau osteochondral allograft. After 1 year of follow-up, the patient showed significant improvement in the subjective shoulder value (from 40% to 99%), QuickDASH score (from 36 to 2), and American Shoulder and Elbow Score (from 46 to 92). Ultimately, medial tibial plateau allograft was a viable option for treatment of an osteochondral glenoid defect in this patient, and additional study of this treatment strategy is warranted.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Orthopedics and Sports Medicine