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Hernia. 2005 May;9(2):115-9. Epub 2004 Dec 4.

Titanium coating of a polypropylene mesh for hernia repair: effect on biocompatibilty.

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Department of Surgery, Technical University of Aachen, Pauwelsstrasse 30, 52057, Aachen, Germany.


Titanium and its alloys are used worldwide in surgery. The favorable characteristics that make this material desirable for implantation are corrosion resistance and biocompatibility. Concerning hernia repair, a mesh modification has been developed using titanium layering of a polypropylene mesh implant, which is said to lead to an improved biocompatibility compared to commercially available mesh materials. To analyze the pure effect of titanium coating, two different mesh structures were studied using a standardized animal model. The titanium-coated monofilamentous, large porous, and lightweight mesh made of polypropylene and coated with titanium (PP+T) was compared to a pure polypropylene mesh manufactured with a similar structure and amount of material serving as a control (PP). In Sprague-Dawley rats, mesh samples were placed in a subcutaneuous position. Then 56, 84, and 182 days after mesh implantation, three animals from each group were sacrificed for morphological observations (amount of inflammatory and connective tissue formation, percentages of proliferating and apoptotic cells, percentage of macrophages). Both mesh modifications investigated showed an overall good biocompatibility. Macroscopic clinical observation after implantation of up to 182 days was uneventful. The tissue response to the PP as well as to the PP+T mesh was characterized by a moderate inflammatory tissue reaction limited to the perifilamentary region as is known for low weight, large porous, and monofilamentous mesh structures. No significant improvement of biocompatibility was found when analyzing the effect of titanium coating compared to the pure polypropylene mesh structure.

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