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J Orthop Res. 2014 Apr;32(4):606-12. doi: 10.1002/jor.22574. Epub 2014 Jan 6.

In vivo monitoring of implant osseointegration in a rabbit model using acoustic sound analysis.

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Department of Orthopedics, University Medicine Rostock, Doberaner Strasse 142, D-18057, Rostock, Germany.


Implant osseointegration can currently only be assessed reliably post mortem. A novel method that relies on the principle of acoustic sound analysis was developed to enable examination of the longitudinal progress of osseointegration. The method is based on a magnetic sphere inside a hollow cylinder of the implant. By excitation using an external magnetic field, collision of the sphere inside the implant produces a sound signal. Custom-made titanium implants equipped thusly were inserted in each lateral femoral epicondyle of 20 New Zealand White Rabbits. Two groups were investigated: Uncoated, machined surface versus antiadhesive surface; and calcium phosphate-coated surface versus antiadhesive surface. The sound analysis was performed postoperatively and weekly. After 4 weeks, the animals were euthanized, and the axial pull-out strengths of the implants were determined. A significant increase in the central frequency was observed for the loose implants (mean pull-out strength 21.1 ± 16.9 N), up to 6.4 kHz over 4 weeks. In comparison, the central frequency of the osseointegrated implants (105.2 ± 25.3 N) dropped to its initial value. The presented method shows potential for monitoring the osseointegration of different implant surfaces and could considerably reduce the number of animals needed for experiments.


acoustic testing; animal experiment; implant coating; osseointegration; vibration analysis

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