A mosaicplasty is a surgical procedure to repair damaged joint cartilage by harvesting small cores of cartilage and bone from a non-weightbearing part of the joint and packing them into a mosaic to repair a larger weightbearing defect in the cartilage.

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

Transferring viable cartilage plugs means that the defect now has a new cartilage covering, although the gaps may fill with less robust fibrocartilage.


How do they do a mosaicplasty?

Via a mini-arthrotomy incision the bone and cartilage plugs are taken with a small corer, similar to an apple corer. The preparation of the recipient bed to exactly the right depth and the press-fitting of the mosaic of cores is performed via arthroscopy. The patient is kept non-weightbearing on crutches for up to 4 weeks.

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Hangody L, Kish G, Kárpáti Z, Udvarhelyi I, Szigeti I, Bély M. Mosaicplasty for the treatment of articular cartilage defects: application in clinical practice. Orthopedics. 1998 Jul;21(7):751-6. doi: 10.3928/0147-7447-19980701-04. PMID: 9672912.

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osteochondral graft
osteochondral autograft

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

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