J Exp Orthop. 2023 Dec; 10: 12.

Satisfactory outcomes of patellar tendon reconstruction using achilles’ tendon allograft with bone block after infected total knee arthroplasty

Theofylaktos Kyriakidis,corresponding author1,2 Charalampos Pitsilos,2 Jacques Hernigou,3 René Verdonk,1 and Michael Hantes4


Extensor mechanism disruption is an uncommon and devastating complication after total knee arthroplasty. It negatively affects patients’ quality of life and leads to significant functional limitations and the inability to stand and walk. The purpose of the present study was to evaluate the outcomes of the extensor mechanism reconstruction using Achilles’ tendon allograft after infected total knee arthroplasty. It was hypothesized that it is a safe procedure and that patients will present good clinical and functional results.


Ten patients treated for infra-patellar extensor mechanism disruption after infected total knee arthroplasty were prospectively followed for two years. The mean age of patients was 70.8 (range 55–85), with a median BMI of 28.72 ± 2.2 kg/m2. All patients underwent reconstruction using a fresh frozen Achilles tendon allograft. Preoperative and postoperative evaluation included knee-related clinical and functional assessment based on objective and subjective scores, including the knee flexion, the extension lag, the Knee Society Score (KSS) clinical and functional, and the visual analog scale (VAS) for pain at 12 and 24 months. Radiological evaluation was also performed using the Caton-Deschamps index. Reported complications were also recorded.


Clinical and functional outcomes recorded significant improvements (p < 0.05) at the final follow-up compared with baseline as follows: Knee flexion was improved from 66° ± 4.8 to 99.7° ± 3.9, and the extension lag was decreased from 28.3° ± 4.4 to 9° ± 2.7. The mean KSS clinical and functional were also improved from 22.6 ± 7.9 to 73.4 ± 3.9 and from 10 ± 13.8 to 55 ± 13.8, respectively. The VAS for pain was decreased from 8.1 ± 1.2 to 1.9 ± 1.2. The Caton-Deschamps index demonstrated a tendency to patella Alta. Two treatment failures were recorded, one patellar dislocation and one re-rupture revised to arthrodesis.


Extensor mechanism reconstruction using Achilles’ tendon allograft after infected total knee arthroplasty is an efficient and safe procedure for infra-patellar disruption. The present study’s findings demonstrate that most of the patients (80%) presented significant clinical and functional improvement at two-year follow-up.

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