In vitro testing of a novel limb salvage prosthesis for the distal femur

Luca Cristofolini, Stefano Bini, Aldo Toni

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Objective. The aim of this paper was to define strain pattern in the host bone following distal femoral resection and implantation of a massive prosthesis. Two methods of coupling the prosthesis to the bone were compared: the Compliant Pre-Stress device, and a standard cemented tumour prosthesis. Design. The composite femur model was selected to minimize variables. Four femurs were tested before and after implantation. Both coaxial and cantilever loading were applied. Background. Cemented distal femoral replacement following resection of malignant tumours has a high failure rate at 5 years and is associated with extensive bone resorption thought to be secondary to stress shielding. Methods. Strain was measured in the medial and lateral sides at four levels with physiologic loads applied, in the intact, Compliant Pre-Stress and cemented femurs. Repeated measurements were taken. Strains in the implanted femur were calculated as percentage of the intact, and statistically analyzed. Results. The most reproducible results were noted in cantilever bending (variability <5%). The Compliant Pre-Stress device demonstrated a more physiologic strain pattern than the cemented stem. The most significant difference between the two implants was in the area adjacent to the interface. Conclusion. The Compliant Pre-Stress device shows less stress shielding than a standard cemented implant. The protocol described and the use of composite femurs demonstrated reproducible results.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)608-615
Number of pages8
JournalClinical Biomechanics
Issue number8
Publication statusPublished - Dec 1998


  • Arthroplasty
  • Femur
  • Massive prosthesis
  • Resection
  • Strain gauge
  • Stress shielding

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Orthopedics and Sports Medicine


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