Autograft Transfer from the Ipsilateral Femoral Condyle in Depressed Tibial Plateau Fractures

N.K Sferopoulos*
2nd Department of Orthopaedic Surgery, Aristotle University of Thessaloniki, “G. Gennimatas” Hospital, 54635 Thessaloniki, Greece

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© N.K. Sferopoulos; Licensee Bentham Open.

open-access license: This is an open access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License ( which permits unrestrictive use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.

* Address correspondence to these authors at the P. Papageorgiou 3, 546 35, Thessaloniki, Greece; Tel: 0030 2310 963270; Fax: 0030 2310 968265; E-mail:


Introduction :

The rationale for operative treatment of depressed tibial plateau fractures is anatomic reduction, stable fixation and grafting. Grafting options include autogenous bone graft or bone substitutes.

Methods :

The autograft group included 18 patients with depressed tibial plateau fractures treated with autogenous bone grafting from the ipsilateral femoral condyle following open reduction and internal fixation. According to Schatzker classification, there were 9 type II, 4 type III, 2 type IV and 3 type V lesions. The average time to union and the hospital charges were compared with the bone substitute group. The latter included 17 patients who had an excellent outcome following treatment of split and/or depressed lateral plateau fractures, using a similar surgical technique but grafting with bone substitutes (allografts).

Results :

Excellent clinical and radiological results were detected in the autograft group after an average follow-up of 28 months (range 12-37). The average time to union in the autograft group was 14 weeks (range 12-16), while in the bone substitute group it was 18 weeks (range 16-20). The mean total cost was 1276 Euros for the autograft group and 2978 Euros for the bone substitute group.

Discussion :

The use of autogenous graft from the ipsilateral femoral condyle following open reduction and internal fixation of depressed tibial plateau fractures provided enough bone to maintain the height of the tibial plateau and was not associated with any donor site morbidity. Using this method, the surgical time was not significantly elongated and the rehabilitation was not affected. It also exhibited faster fracture healing without postoperative loss of reduction and it was less expensive than the use of bone substitutes.

Keywords: Autograft, depressed tibial plateau fracture, ipsilateral femoral condyle..