Where does the graft in ACL reconstruction surgery come from?

Anterior cruciate ligament (ACL) reconstruction is surgery to replace the ligament in the center of your knee with a new ligament. A ligament is a strong band of tissue that attaches one bone to another. The tissue used to create your new ACL is called a graft. It can come from your own body or from a donor.
  • Tissue that comes from your own body is called an autograft. This is most often taken from hamstring tendon or kneecap tendon. The hamstring is the muscle behind your knee.
  • Tissue taken from a donor is called an allograft. A donor is a person who has died and, before death, chose to give his or her body to help others.
Fred C. Redfern, MD
Orthopedic Surgery
Grafts used in ACL repair include those from corpse donors, says Fred Redfern, MD, an orthopedic surgeon at Sunrise Hospital. In this video, he describes how synthetic materials were not proven to last.

Continue Learning about Muscle & Connective Tissue Injuries

What is a tendon injury (tendinopathy)?
Tendons are strong, flexible bands of tissue that connect your muscles to your bones. For example, t...
More Answers
How are tendon injuries treated?
Dr. Fernando J. Manalac, MDDr. Fernando J. Manalac, MD
In the not-so-long-ago past, treatment plans for tendon injuries were very limited: Rest, ice, compr...
More Answers
How is an ACL injury treated?
Dr. Howard J. Luks, MDDr. Howard J. Luks, MD
Perhaps the more important question is should an ACL tear be repaired? Not every patient who tears t...
More Answers
What should I expect after having ACL surgery?
Intermountain HealthcareIntermountain Healthcare
After anterior cruciate ligament (ACL) reconstruction surgery, you will be taken to a recovery area ...
More Answers

Important: This content reflects information from various individuals and organizations and may offer alternative or opposing points of view. It should not be used for medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. As always, you should consult with your healthcare provider about your specific health needs.