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Can anyone offer any advice on a Knee Cartilage Transplant or alternative options???

Question: Can anyone offer any advice on a Knee Cartilage Transplant or alternative options???

After 5 years of 'icing and elevating', 2 lots of physiotherapy and a failed Arthroscopy I have finally been told that I will be needing a Cartilage Transplant.... I've also been told that I have to completely give up dance (which I have done for 15 years), that I won't be able to surf anymore and that I will never run again. Although I am physically able to run (not neccessarily pain-free but still possible) I've been told that even after the surgery I will be unable to; just in case the impact damages or breaks the new cartilage.... This has made me a little unsure as to whether or not I want the procedures done and the surgery has an approximate success rate of 60% which also puts me off slightly
At 19 years old I should be able to go for a run.... Does anyone know of any procedures that would benefit me and enable me to live out my life normally?
Any advice would be greatly appreciated. Many thanks,


I've just had a cartilage transplant (ACI Tibial Fermoral) last week so I'm exactly 1 week post op. I was told the success rate for my op is 80%. As it is a major op take the time to do some research as it is an important decision. I've now had 7 knee operations across the two knees. There is two parts to the op, the first is the collection of cartilage cells which are then grown in a lab to be reimplanted 6-8 weeks later.

The rehab is lengthy, I work with elite athletes but I'm having to take the time away from my job to ensure that I give myself the best chance of recovery. Robyn I've been where you are twice having been told to give up sport & my job which is like giving up life itself. What I have learnt is compromise, I know that I'm not able to do the things I love so I found an alternative way to be involved. It's not ideal but it keeps my passion and love, now I'm having to take stock and readjust again to allow me to do the correct rehab as its 6 - 12 months rehab with it can take 18months to feel the benefits. I'm hoping the outcome will be a success, what I do know is that at 35 and having a child the restrictions I'd suffered I couldn't deal with anymore so I opted for the surgery knowing that in another 10 years I'd have had to given up everything including my job (I was told at 18 to give up sport & ignored this only for more damage to occur by 28 and have to give it up) for me it's about moderating, working out what I can do to what I want to do as at the end of the day you & your health are important.

Sorry I can't be more helpful in shining a brighter light - it took me up until 2 weeks before the second op to decide whether or not I was having the op.
Good luck with your decision,


Sounds to me like you have had some bad advice and as for a "cartiledge transplant" - do you really want to be a guinea pig? I suspect that most of the advice you have received has been from surgeons who, lets face it, just want to operate!

Don't know where you are but have a look at our website either or

I apprecaite that Spain is a long way to come but at least this will open you up to some other thoughts and possibly try and seek better advice elsewhere.

Good luck.


My recommendation, try the cartilege replacement. I am 43 I had my first meniscus surgery at 33 and injured it again a year ago. I started synvisk treatments but they are really only a temporary fix (6 months at a time). I now have osteo-arthritis and may need a knee replacement surgery before the age of 50. You will have to change your life style and focus on low impact exercises. If they offered you the cartilege replacement, I would go for it, they don't offer it to everyone and once you get osteo-arthritis, that offer will be pulled. Good Luck.


you are too young fort the cartilage transplant, I recommand you to try glucosamine sulphate( XICIL in Spain) 1500 mg per day for 6 months and tell me about after this time
Really it help