Implants, foreign or otherwise, have their place in the reconstructive field of plastic surgery. In the past, the materials used as implants were chiefly bone or cartilage. Their use dates back to about 1861, when rib grafts were made to supply the skeletal framework of a reconstructed nose. Other materials that have been used include bovine cartilage, ear, rib and septal (autogenous) cartilage and homocartilage.
Bovine cartilage has been used in place of an autoplastic transplant but with little success. Ear cartilage is often used and with definite success in cases of minor repair, where only a small defect exists. Homocartilage1 as a material is fairly satisfactory but not as satisfactory as autogenous cartilage. Homocartilage can be obtained at autopsy, sterilized and stored, to be used as needed. This type has the advantage of eliminating the somewhat hazardous operation of costal resection, with its prolonged incapacity and morbidity. Regardless