A graft 'harvest' is the procedure of taking body material for use in a graft, such as a ligament graft, a meniscus graft or a bone graft.

Page updated October 2023 by Dr Sheila Strover (Clinical Editor)

graft harvest

A common graft harvest is from the semitendinosus ('semi-T') and gracilis tendons, and this is usually an autograft, ie taken from the patient during the reconstruction surgery.

Meniscus transplants and bone transplants, on the other hand, are generally harvested from cadavers and processed and stored in a tissue bank for later use on demand.


What is an autograft?

A graft is most likely to be accepted by the body if the graft material is taken from the patient's own body. This is called an 'autograft'. The material is prepared in the operating room and wrapped in moist gauze until the surgeon is ready to implant it.

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What is an allograft?

An allograft is material (eg tendon) taken from a cadaver, prepared and then stored at very low temperatures until ordered by the hospital for a tendon graft. It is then defrosted and implanted into the patient.

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Dr Sheila Strover (Editor)
BSc (Hons), MB BCh, MBA

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