Material changes in osteoporotic human cancellous bone following infiltration with acrylic bone cement for a vertebral cement augmentation

G. Baroud, J. Nemes, S. J. Ferguson, T. Steffen

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43 Scopus citations


Bone cement infiltration can be effective at mechanically augmenting osteoporotic vertebrae. While most published literature describes the gain in mechanical strength of augmented vertebrae, we report the first measurements of viscoelastic material changes of cancellous bone due to cement infiltration. We infiltrated cancellous core specimen harvested from osteoporotic cadaveric spines with acrylic bone cement. Bone specimen before and after cement infiltration were subjected to identical quasi-static and relaxation loading in confined and free compression. Testing data were fitted to a linear viscoelastic model of compressible material and the model parameters for cement, native cancellous bone, and cancellous bone infiltrated (composite) with cement were identified. The fitting demonstrated that the linear viscoelastic model presented in this paper accurately describes the mechanical behaviour of cement and bone, before and after infiltration. Although the composite specimen did not completely adopt the properties of bulk bone cement, the stiffening of cancellous bone due to cement infiltration is considerable. The composite was, for example, 8.5 times stiffer than native bone. The local stiffening of cancellous bone in patients may alter the load transfer of the augmented motion segment and may be the cause of subsequent fractures in the vertebrae adjacent to the ones infiltrated with cement. The material model and parameters in this paper, together with an adequate finite-element model, can be helpful to investigate the load shift, the mechanism for subsequent fractures, and filling patterns for ideal cement infiltration.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)133-139
Number of pages7
JournalComputer Methods in Biomechanics and Biomedical Engineering
Issue number2
StatePublished - 2003

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Bioengineering
  • Biomedical Engineering
  • Human-Computer Interaction
  • Computer Science Applications


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