Vascularized osteochondral graft from the medial femoral trochlea: anatomical study and clinical perspectives


Few donor sites for vascularized reconstruction of convex joint surfaces have been described. We studied the feasibility of a convex vascularized osteochondral graft harvested from the medial femoral condyle and trochlea, on an anatomical and practical point of view. An injection-corrosion technique was used on 16 fresh cadaver specimens, and completed by a modified Spalteholz clearing. The extra- and intraosseous vascularization of the medial femoral condyle was systematized and the luminal diameter of the arteries was microscopically measured. Radii of curvature of the medial trochlea and of the carpal bones were measured on arthro-CT-scanner reconstructed images. The periosteal vessels of the medial condyle are responsible for the whole peripheral intraosseous vascularization, without any watershed region. They are fed by the articular branch of the descending genicular artery and/or the superomedial genicular artery. Several constant vascular axes can be found, and may serve as a pedicle for a vascularized osteochondral graft from the medial femoral trochlea. The radii of curvature of this graft do fit those of the proximal carpal row. A simple surgical approach is suggested. A vascularized graft harvested on the medial femoral trochlea is a technically feasible procedure that could represent a new reconstructive tool for convex joint surfaces. Osteonecrosis of the proximal pole of the scaphoid or Kienböck’s disease are among several situations where such a graft could be beneficial.


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