Despite the fundamental value of wear simulation studies to assess wear resistance of total joint replacements, neither specialised simulators nor established external conditions are available for the human ankle joint. The aim of the present study was to verify the suitability of a knee wear simulator to assess wear rates in ankle prostheses, and to report preliminary this rate for a novel three-component total ankle replacement design. Four intact 'small' size specimens of the Box ankle were analysed in a four-station knee wear simulator. Special component-to-actuator holders were manufactured and starting spatial alignment of the three-components was sought. Consistent load and motion cycles representing conditions at the ankle joint replaced exactly with the prosthesis design under analysis were taken from a corresponding mechanical model of the stance phase of walking. The weight loss for the three specimens, after two million cycles, was 32.68, 14.78, and 62.28 mg which correspond to a linear penetration of 0.018, 0.008, and 0.034 mm per million-cycle, respectively for the specimens #1, #2, and #3. The knee wear simulator was able to reproduce load-motion patterns typical of a replaced ankle. Motion of the meniscal bearing in between the tibial and talar components was smooth, this component remaining in place and in complete congruence with the metal components throughout the test.
- Knee wear simulator
- Meniscal bearing
- Total ankle replacement
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Orthopedics and Sports Medicine