The Journal of Scanning Microscopies
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SCANNING Vol. 19, 253–257 (1997)
© FAMS, Inc.
Received June 13, 1996
Accepted with revision July 24, 1996
P. Frayssinet,*+ F. Braye,‡ G. Weber,§
*Bioland; +Laboratoire du tissu osseux et des pathologies ostéo-articulaires, Université Paul Sabatier, Toulouse; ‡Laboratoire de Physique des Particules, Université Blaise Pascal, Clermont Ferrand, France; §Institut de Physique Nucléaire Expérimentale, Faculté des Sciences, Liège, Belgium
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The osseointegration of porous calcium phosphate ceramics once implanted evolves in several stages. The mechanism of integration of such material usually is evaluated by histologic analysis. The trace elements present in bone can be detected in the ceramic and help to provide a semiquantitative evaluation of osseointegration. Two different methods of microanalysis, energy-dispersive spectrometry (EDS) and proton induced x-emission (PIXE) were used in this study to determine the appearance of trace elements (Zn, Sr, and Fe) present in bone at the implantation site containing the ceramic. Porous HA-ceramic cylinders were implanted in the cortical bone of sheep femurs for periods ranging from 2 to 36 weeks. Thick sections of the implant-containing bone were made at the end of the implantation period. A scanning line with proton or electron impacts 0.5 mm apart was plotted from the edges of the cortical bone across the implanted ceramic and the resulting x-ray spectra were determined. Following EDS analysis, the sections were surface-stained, observed under a light microscope, and the pore volume occupied by bone tissue was measured. The spectra obtained by PIXE method showed two regions for each element characterising either the bone tissue or the ceramic. Zinc and strontium present in the bone tissue, but absent from the ceramic, appeared 8 and 12 weeks after implantation, respectively. The concentration of iron present in the implant decreased with time. EDS showed no significant level of either element in the bone or the ceramic. Histologic observation revealed that immature bone invaded the pores of the outer layer of the ceramic as early as 2 weeks after implantation. The ceramics were totally osseointegrated 20 weeks after implantation, although ceramic degradation continued for longer. In this experiment, the PIXE method was apparently sufficiently sensitive for monitoring the amount of trace element appearing in bone-implanted material.
Key words: proton-induced x-emission, osseointegration, calcium phosphate ceramic, histomorphometry, bone
Presentation of this paper was made possible through the support of the Foundation for Advances in Medicine and Science, Inc.
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