Send to:

Choose Destination
See comment in PubMed Commons below
Am J Sports Med. 2013 Oct;41(10):2439-48. doi: 10.1177/0363546513484127. Epub 2013 Apr 12.

Bone-patellar tendon-bone autograft versus allograft in outcomes of anterior cruciate ligament reconstruction: a meta-analysis of 5182 patients.

Author information

  • 1Matthew J. Kraeutler, BS, CU Sports Medicine, 311 Mapleton Avenue, Boulder, CO 80304.



Bone-patellar tendon-bone (BPTB) is a common autograft and allograft source used for anterior cruciate ligament (ACL) reconstruction. Although the failure rate is generally higher for allografts, donor site morbidity and anterior knee pain can be issues with BPTB autografts. Controversy exists regarding the functional outcomes, complications, and knee stability of these grafts, previous comparisons of which have been based on smaller samples of case series.


To compare BPTB autografts to allografts for ACL reconstruction, specifically with regard to patient satisfaction, return to preinjury activity level, and postoperative functional outcomes.




A total of 76 studies published between 1998 and 2012, including a total of 5182 patients, were reviewed. It was not required for studies to be comparative in nature. Outcomes evaluated were graft rupture rate, return to preinjury activity level, overall and subjective International Knee Documentation Committee (IKDC), Lysholm, Tegner activity, Cincinnati Knee Rating System, pivot shift, and single-legged hop tests, as well as KT-1000 arthrometer side-to-side difference and presence of anterior knee pain. Summary odds ratios with 95% confidence intervals were calculated to compare BPTB autografts to allografts for each outcome.


Outcomes on subjective IKDC, Lysholm, Tegner, single-legged hop, and KT-1000 arthrometer were statistically significantly in favor of autografts. Return to preinjury activity level, overall IKDC, pivot shift, and anterior knee pain were significantly in favor of allografts, although allograft BPTB demonstrated a 3-fold increase in rerupture rates compared with autograft (12.7% vs 4.3%). There was no significant difference between the 2 groups for Cincinnati Knee scores.


Patients undergoing ACL reconstruction with BPTB autografts demonstrate lower rates of graft rupture, lower levels of knee laxity, and improved single-legged hop test results and are more generally satisfied postoperatively compared with patients undergoing reconstruction with allograft BPTB.


ACL reconstruction; allograft; anterior cruciate ligament; autograft; bone–patellar tendon–bone

[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
PubMed Commons home

PubMed Commons

How to join PubMed Commons

    Supplemental Content

    Full text links

    Icon for HighWire
    Loading ...
    Write to the Help Desk