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  • Author or Editor: Andrew J. Rapoff x
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SUMMARY

By use of wire ropes as the transosseous component, an external skeletal fixator for the repair of long bone fractures in horses and cattle has been designed and tested in axial compression. Theoretical methods were used in the design process to size fixator components; however, our results suggest that conventional methods of analyzing the displacement of the transosseous component may not apply to wire ropes. Large pretensions in the wire ropes are necessary to obtain functional stiffnesses for fracture fixation. Therefore, a method was sought for terminating the ropes so that an appropriate pretension could be introduced into the rope through its interface with the fixator rings. Ropes were terminated by use of 5 methods and were tested in axial tension to failure. These methods included 3 copper sleeve arrangements, welded ends, and drum sockets. The drum sockets (57.6% of rope breaking strength) far exceeded the strengths provided by the copper sleeves (8.5 to 26.6%) and the welded ends (44.3%). Using the drum sockets, 5 rope configurations were assembled to the fixator, using wood blocks to simulate bones with a gap defect. The fixator was loaded in axial compression for each of the rope configurations, and stiffnesses were determined from measured axial displacement and applied load. The 4-ring fixator configuration, with 2 ropes at 60° angular separation/ring, was the stiffest. In a worst case (gap) model, a mean axial compression load of 1,730 N was observed at 2 mm of displacement for a 4-ring fixator configuration. Our results suggest that, in less conservative scenarios where compression of the fracture surfaces can share limb loads, wire ropes may function well as the transosseous components of an external fixator.

Free access
in American Journal of Veterinary Research

Abstract

Objective—To evaluate mediolateral, axial, torsional, and craniocaudal bending behavior of 6 distal ring-block configurations commonly used to stabilize short juxta-articular bone segments in small animals.

Sample Population—8 circular external skeletal fixator constructs of each of 6 distal ring-block configurations. The distal ring-block configurations were composed of combinations of complete rings, incomplete rings, and drop wires.

Procedure—Constructs were nondestructively loaded in axial compression, craniocaudal bending, mediolateral bending, and torsional loading by use of a materials testing machine. Gap stiffness was determined by use of the resultant load displacement curve.

Results—Circular external skeletal fixator configurations and constructs significantly affected gap stiffness in all testing modes. Within each loading mode, gap stiffness was significantly different among most configurations. In general, complete ring configurations were significantly stiffer than similar incomplete ring configurations, and addition of a drop wire to a configuration significantly increased stiffness of that configuration.

Conclusions and Clinical Relevance—When regional anatomic structures permit, the use of complete ring configurations is preferred over incomplete ring configurations. When incomplete ring configurations are used, the addition of a drop wire is recommended. (Am J Vet Res 2004;65:393–398)

Full access
in American Journal of Veterinary Research

Summary

Basic research in canine mechanics must be performed to better understand the forces and moments the appendicular skeleton must withstand. This type of research may allow surgeons to make substantial advances in total joint replacement and fracture fixation design and may enhance our understanding of bone remodeling and fracture occurrence in relation to exercise and trauma. In our study, craniocaudal bending stiffness, mediolateral bending stiffness, axial compressive stiffness, and torsional stiffness of the humerus, femur, radius, and tibia of dogs was determined, using nondestructive bending, compression, and torsional tests. Entire diaphyseal and middiaphyseal properties of these long bones were evaluated. Bones also were tested to failure in torsion to quantify the failure properties of these long bones. Left to right variability was examined to validate the use of contralateral limbs as the control condition for experimental studies. There were no significant right to left differences in entire diaphyseal mechanical properties for any of the long bones, except for compressive stiffness of femurs. Homotypic differences in entire diaphyseal mechanical properties, if present, ranged from 8.0 to 35% for the 4 long bones (power = 0.8). For middiaphyseal mechanical properties, there were no significant right to left differences in the 4 long bones, except for craniocaudal bending stiffness of tibias. The homotypic differences in middiaphyseal mechanical properties, if present, ranged from 7.2 to 62% for the 4 long bones (power = 0.8). In all bones and loading modes, middiaphyseal stiffness was greater than entire diaphyseal stiffness (P < 0.0001). In torsional energy to failure and maximal torsional displacement at failure, entire diaphyseal properties were significantly (P < 0.0001) higher than middiaphyseal properties. In axial compression, there were no entire diaphyseal or middiaphyseal mechanical property differences among the 4 bones. In craniocaudal bending, humeruses were significantly (P < 0.05) more stiff than the other 3 bones in the entire diaphysis, and were more stiff than radiuses and tibias in the middiaphysis. In mediolateral and craniolateral bending and in torsion, radiuses were less stiff, in the entire diaphysis and in the middiaphysis, than were the other 3 bones (P < 0.05). In torsion, there were no significant differences in energy to failure or in maximal displacement at failure among the 4 bones, either in the entire diaphysis or middiaphysis.

Free access
in American Journal of Veterinary Research

Abstract

Objective—To compare radius of curvature along the ulnar trochlear notch of Rottweilers and Greyhounds to determine whether morphologic differences exist that may contribute to the cause and pathogenesis of fragmented coronoid process in Rottweilers.

Sample Population—Paired elbow joints from 13 Rottweilers and 14 Greyhounds.

Procedure—Elbow joints were radiographically scored on the basis of severity of osteoarthritic lesions. The articular contour of each ulnar trochlear notch was digitized. The radius of curvature at defined points along the ulnar trochlear notch was compared between breeds.

Results—Radius of curvature of the ulnar trochlear notch was not a constant function of arc length in either breed but had a consistent characteristic appearance in both breeds. Radius of curvature was greatest at each end of the ulnar trochlear notch and had 2 peaks in the midportion of the notch in both breeds. These peaks occurred farther distally in the notch and were larger in Rottweiler ulnae than Greyhound ulnae. A significant difference in mean radius of curvature was detected between breeds at these peaks. Greyhounds had significantly greater mean radius of curvature at the end of the medial coronoid process, compared with Rottweilers.

Conclusions and Clinical Relevance—Radius of curvature of the ulnar trochlear notch is a complex function of arc length in Rottweilers and Greyhounds. The waveform has a consistent characteristic appearance in both breeds. Although significant differences were identified between breeds, associations between these differences and cause or pathogenesis of fragmented coronoid process in Rottweilers were not apparent. ( Am J Vet Res 2001; 62:968–973)

Full access
in American Journal of Veterinary Research

Abstract

Objective—To determine relative effects of ring diameter and wire tension on axial biomechanical properties of 4-ring circular external skeletal fixator constructs.

Sample Population—4-ring circular external skeletal fixator constructs and artificial bone models.

Procedure—4-ring constructs were assembled, using 50-, 66-, 84-, or 118-mm-diameter rings. Two 1.6-mm-diameter fixation wires were attached to opposing surfaces of each ring at intersection angles of 90o and placed through a gap-fracture bone model. Three examples of each construct were loaded in axial compression at 7 N/s to a maximum load of 400 N at each of 4 wire tensions (0, 30, 60, and 90 kg). Response variables were determined from resulting load-displacement curves (construct stiffness, load at 1 mm of displacement, displacement at 400 N).

Results—Ring diameter and wire tension had a significant effect on all response variables and had a significant interaction for construct stiffness and displacement at 400 N. Significant differences within all response variables were seen among all 4 ring diameters and all 4 wire tensions. As ring diameter increased, effect of increasing wire tension on gap stiffness and gap displacement at 400 N decreased. Ring diameter had a greater effect than wire tension on all response variables.

Conclusions and Clinical Relevance—Although effects of wire tension decrease as ring diameter increases, placing tension on wires in larger ring constructs is important because these constructs are inherently less stiff. The differential contribution of ring diameter, wire tension, and their interactions must be considered when using circular external skeletal fixators. (Am J Vet Res 2001;62:1025–1030)

Full access
in American Journal of Veterinary Research