Mechanisms of reduced implant stability in osteoporotic bone

  • D. RuffoniEmail author
  • R. Müller
  • G. H. van Lenthe
Original Paper


The determining factors for the fixation of uncemented screws in bone are the bone-implant interface and the peri-implant bone. The goal of this work was to explore the role of the peri-implant bone architecture on the mechanics of the bone-implant system. In particular, the specific aims of the study were to investigate: (i) the impact of the different architectural parameters, (ii) the effects of disorder, and (iii) the deformations in the peri-implant region. A three-dimensional beam lattice model to describe trabecular bone was developed. Various microstructural features of the lattice were varied in a systematic way. Implant pull-out tests were simulated, and the stiffness and strength of the bone-implant system were computed. The results indicated that the strongest decrease in pull-out strength was obtained by trabecular thinning, whereas pull-out stiffness was mostly affected by trabecular removal. These findings could be explained by investigating the peri-implant deformation field. For small implant displacements, a large amount of trabeculae in the peri-implant region were involved in the load transfer from implant to bone. Therefore, trabecular removal in this region had a strong negative effect on pull-out stiffness. Conversely, at higher displacements, deformations mainly localized in the trabeculae in contact with the implant; hence, thinning those trabeculae produced the strongest decrease in the strength of the system. Although idealized, the current approach is helpful for a mechanical understanding of the role played by peri-implant bone.


Implant anchorage Peri-implant bone architecture Osteoporosis Finite element method Pull-out test 


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag 2011

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Institute for BiomechanicsETH ZurichZurichSwitzerland
  2. 2.Division of Biomechanics and Engineering DesignK.U.LeuvenLeuvenBelgium

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