OBJECTIVE To evaluate mechanical properties of pigeon (Columba livia) cadaver intact humeri versus ostectomized humeri stabilized with a locking or nonlocking plate.
SAMPLE 30 humeri from pigeon cadavers.
PROCEDURES Specimens were allocated into 3 groups and tested in bending and torsion. Results for intact pigeon humeri were compared with results for ostectomized humeri repaired with a titanium 1.6-mm screw locking plate or a stainless steel 1.5-mm dynamic compression plate; the ostectomized humeri mimicked a fracture in a thin cortical bone. Locking plates were secured with locking screws (2 bicortical and 4 monocortical), and nonlocking plates were secured with bicortical nonlocking screws. Constructs were cyclically tested nondestructively in 4-point bending and then tested to failure in bending. A second set of constructs were cyclically tested non-destructively and then to failure in torsion. Stiffness, strength, and strain energy of each construct were compared.
RESULTS Intact specimens were stiffer and stronger than the repair groups for all testing methods, except for nonlocking constructs, which were significantly stiffer than intact specimens under cyclic bending. Intact bones had significantly higher strain energies than locking plates in both bending and torsion. Locking and nonlocking plates were of equal strength and strain energy, but not stiffness, in bending and were of equal strength, stiffness, and strain energy in torsion.
CONCLUSIONS AND CLINICAL RELEVANCE Results for this study suggested that increased torsional strength may be needed before bone plate repair can be considered as the sole fixation method for avian species.