Cortical bone perfusion in plated fracutured sheep tibiae

Philip J. Kregor, David Senft, Dara Parvin, Colleen Campbell, Sean Toomey, Colleen Parker, Thurman Gillespy, Marc F. Swiontkowski

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24 Scopus citations


The limited contact dynamic compression plate and partial contact plate were designed to decrease contact with cortical bone in an attempt to decrease cortical ischemia, remodeling, and eventual porosis under the plate after use of standard dynamic compression plates. This study quantified cortical bone blood flow beneath the plate with these three different designs in a sheep tibia fracture model. In 18 skeletally immature sheep, the right tibia was fractured and then was internally fixed with an interfragmentary screw and a dynamic compression plate, limited contact dynamic compression plate, or partial contact plate. At 12 weeks, cortical bone perfusion was assessed with laser Doppler flowmetry in nine areas beneath the plate. The baseline (before fracture) cortical bone cell flux averaged 100 ± 60 mV. After fracture, this decreased to 60 ± 48 mV (p < 0.0003); immediately after plating, the perfusion averaged 29 ± 25 mV (p < 0.01). Cortical bone perfusion then increased to 106 ± 52, 165 ± 71, and 163 ± 71 mV at 2, 6, and 12 weeks after fracture (p < 0.001 for all when compared with values after plating). No significant differences in cortical perfusion were seen between the types of plate. Cortical porosity under the plate was assessed with digital density analysis of microradiographs of this region. No significant difference was seen between the types of plate in this analysis or in biomechanical and disulphine blue perfusion analysis. Thus, no significant advantage was seen for the new plate designs used in this model. This lack of advantage may be a result of the immature animals used in the study, the protocol for blood flow measurement, the invasive periosteal stripping employed to create the fracture, or all three. However, as advantages with the new plate designs have been seen in other studies, this area warrants further investigation.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)715-724
Number of pages10
JournalJournal of Orthopaedic Research
Issue number5
StatePublished - Sep 1995


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