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Assessing the Feasibility of 3D-Printed PEKK Endoprostheses for Bone Reconstruction in Bone Tumors of the Proximal Femur


Osteosarcoma is the most common form of bone cancer found in children, adolescents, and young adults. Other bone cancers include chondrosarcoma and Ewing sarcoma. Previously, limb amputation was the primary method used for tumor resection; however, limb preserving surgery has become standard. After tumor resection in limb-sparing surgery, methods for reconstruction include allographs, vascularized fibula grafts, rotationplasty, and endoprosthesis replacement. Endoprostheses may allow for more immediate mechanical stability and a faster functional recovery than biological reconstruction methods. These endoprostheses may be modular or custom designed. It has been suggested that the custom-designed implants will provide greater initial stability and may be the only option for significant bone deficiency. Long term complications include breakage, loosening, or infection, suggesting room for improvement in prostheses design. Additionally, patients undergoing limb-sparing procedures using prostheses for reconstruction may suffer from severe bone and soft tissue loss. Using shape modeling and 3D printing to replace the bone could allow for a perfect fit of the implant during the limb reconstruction after removal of bone tumors and after traumatic bone loss. Furthermore, the surface properties of PEKK may limit damage and wear to cartilage on the opposing joint surface. The use of PEKK for the implants would offer a material with weight and elastic modulus more similar to that of bone than other metals currently being used for implants, such as titanium and PEEK. This could decrease stress shielding, which can lead to implant loosening. Bony ingrowth has also been demonstrated in animal models using PEKK, which would be advantageous in limb reconstruction as it would improve the bone-implant interface. Mechanical testing will be performed on a 3D printed model of a proximal femur implant with ultimate strength and fatigue testing as the primary outcomes. The project will assess whether the mechanical properties of the custom implants meet the performance requirements as defined by the relevant ASTM standards for hip arthroplasty. Next steps include assessing bony tissue and soft tissue ingrowth of the PEKK implants. The project's overall goal is to assess the feasibility of moving forward with the use of these custom prostheses for treatment in bone cancer.
Scholarly concentration: Non-Scholarly Concentrator

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Payne, Taylor, Terek, Richard, and Crisco, J.J. Trey, "Assessing the Feasibility of 3D-Printed PEKK Endoprostheses for Bone Reconstruction in Bone Tumors of the Proximal Femur" (2021). Warren Alpert Medical School Academic Symposium. Brown Digital Repository. Brown University Library.



  • Warren Alpert Medical School Academic Symposium

    The Warren Alpert Medical School Academic Symposium is an annual event at Warren Alpert Medical School of Brown University that provides Year II medical students a venue to present their summer research in a poster format. Participation in the Symposium …