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The bio-tribological characteristics of synthetic tissue grafts

Thomas, J. M. C., Beevers, D., Dowson, D., Jones, Michael David ORCID:, King, Pauline and Theobald, Peter ORCID: 2011. The bio-tribological characteristics of synthetic tissue grafts. Proceedings of the Institution of Mechanical Engineers, Part H: Journal of Engineering in Medicine 225 (2) , pp. 141-148. 10.1243/09544119JEIM796

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The use of synthetic connective tissue grafts became popular in the mid-1980s, particularly for anterior cruciate ligament reconstruction; however, this trend was soon changed given the high failure rate due to abrasive wear. More than 20 years later, a vast range of grafts are available to the orthopaedic surgeon for augmenting connective tissue following rupture or tissue loss. While the biomechanical properties of these synthetic grafts become ever closer to the natural tissue, there have been no reports of their bio-tribological (i.e. bio-friction) characteristics. In this study, the bio-tribological performance of three clinically available synthetic tissue grafts, and natural tendon, was investigated. It was established that the natural tissue exhibits fluid-film lubrication characteristics and hence is highly efficient when sliding against opposing tissues. Conversely, all the synthetic tissues demonstrated boundary or mixed lubrication regimes, resulting in surface–surface contact, which will subsequently cause third body wear. The tribological performance of the synthetic tissue, however, appeared to be dependent on the macroscopic structure. This study indicates that there is a need for synthetic tissue designs to have improved frictional characteristics or to use a scaffold structure that encourages tissue in-growth. Such a development would optimize the bio-tribological properties of the synthetic tissue and thereby maximize longevity.

Item Type: Article
Date Type: Publication
Status: Published
Schools: Centre for Advanced Manufacturing Systems At Cardiff (CAMSAC)
Subjects: R Medicine > R Medicine (General)
T Technology > T Technology (General)
Uncontrolled Keywords: biotribology; failure; graft; synthetic; connective tissue
Publisher: Sage
ISSN: 0954-4119
Last Modified: 06 Jan 2024 03:46

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