SYMPOSIA PAPER Published: 01 January 1987

A Biomechanical and Histological Examination of Different Surface Treatments of Titanium Implants for Total Joint Replacement


The objective of this study was to evaluate biomechanically and histologically the effectiveness of different surfaces—specifically, smooth, textured, and plasma-sprayed porous surfaces—on titanium implants in achieving stable fixation for total joint replacements.

Hollow cylindrical metal plugs (5 to 6 mm in diameter) with different surfaces were implanted in the femora of two dogs. After five months of implantation, pull-out tests were carried out on these cylinders. The ultimate shear strengths were 11.54 ± 2.96, 3.17 ± 0.81, and 1.04 ± 0.32 N/m2 for the plasma-sprayed, textured, and smooth surfaces, respectively. As expected, the smooth cylinders showed the minimum pull-out strengths and the porous-coated ones the maximum. Histological examination showed maximum bony ingrowth in the plasma-sprayed group and moderate growth in the textured group. Our results suggest that a textured surface or a porous coating (plasma spray) on titanium implants could significantly improve the long-term stability of uncemented total joint replacements.

Author Information

Saha, S
Louisiana State University Medical Center, Shreveport, LA
Albright, JA
Center for Hip and Knee Surgery, Indianapolis, IN
Keating, ME
Center for Hip and Knee Surgery, Indianapolis, IN
Misra, RP
Louisiana State University Medical Center, Shreveport, LA
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Developed by Committee: F04
Pages: 276–285
DOI: 10.1520/STP25239S
ISBN-EB: 978-0-8031-5015-7
ISBN-13: 978-0-8031-0965-0