The Italian Almanac

knee

Italian News / Medicine - July 19

Italy has made a key advance in knee transplant surgery. For the first time in the world an entire knee has been transplanted using living cartilage and tendons. Surgeon Sandro Giannini of a Bologna clinic used by soccer stars including Roberto Baggio said the technique was unique because it brought no risk of rejection.

Giannini had surgical tools specially made for the operation, in which donor and recipient knees are sculpted to fit perfectly. The new knee is then fixed with titanium rods. Giannini said the transplant was particularly suited to young patients with good bone condition.

Unlike even the best artificial knees, the transplant was permanent.