Mechanical testing of internal fixation devices: A theoretical and practical examination of current methods

Grant, Caroline A., Schuetz, Michael, & Epari, Devakara (2015) Mechanical testing of internal fixation devices: A theoretical and practical examination of current methods. Journal of Biomechanics, 48(15), pp. 3989-3994.

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Successful healing of long bone fractures is dependent on the mechanical environment created within the fracture, which in turn is dependent on the fixation strategy. Recent literature reports have suggested that locked plating devices are too stiff to reliably promote healing. However, in vitro testing of these devices has been inconsistent in both method of constraint and reported outcomes, making comparisons between studies and the assessment of construct stiffness problematic. Each of the methods previously used in the literature were assessed for their effect on the bending of the sample and concordant stiffness. The choice of outcome measures used in in vitro fracture studies was also assessed. Mechanical testing was conducted on seven hole locked plated constructs in each method for comparison. Based on the assessment of each method the use of spherical bearings, ball joints or similar is suggested at both ends of the sample. The use of near and far cortex movement was found to be more comprehensive and more accurate than traditional centrally calculated inter fragmentary movement values; stiffness was found to be highly susceptible to the accuracy of deformation measurements and constraint method, and should only be used as a within study comparison method. The reported stiffness values of locked plate constructs from in vitro mechanical testing is highly susceptible to testing constraints and output measures, with many standard techniques overestimating the stiffness of the construct. This raises the need for further investigation into the actual mechanical behaviour within the fracture gap of these devices.

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ID Code: 92289
Item Type: Journal Article
Refereed: Yes
Keywords: Bone, Fracture Fixation, Orthopaedic Fixation devices, Interfragmentary Motion, Mechanical testing
DOI: 10.1016/j.jbiomech.2015.09.013
ISSN: 0021-9290
Subjects: Australian and New Zealand Standard Research Classification > ENGINEERING (090000) > BIOMEDICAL ENGINEERING (090300) > Biomechanical Engineering (090302)
Divisions: Current > Schools > School of Chemistry, Physics & Mechanical Engineering
Current > Schools > School of Civil Engineering & Built Environment
Current > Institutes > Institute of Health and Biomedical Innovation
Current > QUT Faculties and Divisions > Science & Engineering Faculty
Facilities: Science and Engineering Centre
Copyright Owner: Copyright 2015 Elsevier
Copyright Statement: Licensed under the Creative Commons Attribution; Non-Commercial; No-Derivatives 4.0 International. DOI: 10.1016/j.jbiomech.2015.09.013
Deposited On: 26 Jan 2016 23:42
Last Modified: 31 Jan 2016 05:35

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