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Open Access Soft Tissue Movement and Stress Shielding Do Not Affect Bone Ingrowth in the Bone Conduction Chamber

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A variety of bone chambers are used in orthopedic research to study bone and tissue ingrowth in small and large animals. If different bone chambers are placed in one species, differences in bone ingrowth are observed. For instance, bone ingrowth in the bone conduction chamber (BCC) is high, but is low or absent in the repeated sampling bone chamber (RSBC).

This difference may be explained by the design and fixation of these chambers. It is known that stress shielding and micromovement can influence bone formation. The objective of the study reported here was to determine whether stress shielding or soft tissue movement affected bone ingrowth in the BCC in the goat. Two types of caps were made, with fixation similar to that of the fixation plate of the RSBC. By placing the caps over the BCCs and fixating the caps directly to the tibial bone, the effect of stress shielding was studied. One cap was in direct contact with the bone chamber underneath, the other cap did not touch the chamber. This difference was used to observe whether movement of the soft tissue on top of the chamber and cap would affect bone ingrowth. Each limb received one control chamber without a cap and a chamber with a cap, either with or without contacting the BCC, yielding four implants per goat. After 12 weeks, bone and total tissue ingrowths were measured.

Bone ingrowth was seen in 38 of 40 chambers. Total tissue and bone ingrowths were comparable between control chambers and BCCs with a cap, irrespective of type. Neither stress shielding, nor lack of movement of soft tissue affected bone ingrowth. Other factors in the design of the chambers were responsible for the difference in bone ingrowth between the BCC and the RSBC.

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Document Type: Research Article

Affiliations: Orthopaedic Research Laboratory, Department of Orthopaedics, University Medical Center, P.O. Box 9101, 6500 HB Nijmegen, The Netherlands

Publication date: August 1, 2002

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  • Comparative Medicine (CM), an international journal of comparative and experimental medicine, is the leading English-language publication in the field and is ranked by the Science Citation Index in the upper third of all scientific journals. The mission of CM is to disseminate high-quality, peer-reviewed information that expands biomedical knowledge and promotes human and animal health through the study of laboratory animal disease, animal models of disease, and basic biologic mechanisms related to disease in people and animals.

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