Bioresorbable materials overcome two major disadvantages of the metal alloys most commonly used in fracture-fixation devices: their extreme stiffness, which causes stress shielding of the underlying bone, and the necessity, in a significant number of cases, of removing metallic implants after fracture healing is complete. The orthopedic surgeon now has the use of polylactic acid, polyglycolic acid, and polydioxanone implants for the fixation of small cancellous bone fractures. The currently available bioresorbable materials lack strength and stiffness and are associated with inflammatory reactions and osteolysis in a significant number of cases. Surgeons should use the available pins and screws with extreme care and attention to the characteristics of each individual injury, particularly its healing characteristics, as well as to the material's initial mechanical properties, degradation rates, and associated complications.
|Number of pages
|American journal of orthopedics (Belle Mead, N.J.)
|Published - Nov 1997
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- General Medicine