Biodegradable magnesium-based implants in bone studied by synchrotron radiation microtomography


Permanent implants made of titanium or its alloys are the gold standard in many orthopedic and traumatological applications due to their good biocompatibility and mechanical properties. However, a second surgical intervention is required for this kind of implants as they have to be removed in the case of children that are still growing or on patient’s demand. Therefore, magnesium-based implants are considered for medical applications as they are degraded under physiological conditions. The major challenge is tailoring the degradation in a manner that is suitable for a biological environment and such that stabilization of the bone is provided for a controlled period. In order to understand failure mechanisms of magnesium-based implants in orthopedic applications and, further, to better understand the osseointegration, screw implants in bone are studied under mechanical load by means of a push-out device installed at the imaging beamline P05 of PETRA III at DESY. Conventional absorption contrast microtomography and phasecontrast techniques are applied in order to monitor the bone-to-implant interface under increasing load conditions. In this proof-of-concept study, first results from an in situ push-out experiment are presented.
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