Zirconia Knee Wear and Raman Spectroscopy Studies Compares 3.5-Mrad and 7-Mrad UHMWPE Inserts
We studied the long-term wear behaviour of alumina-doped zirconia femoral condyles against ultra-high molecular weight polyethylene (UHMWPE) tibial inserts. The simulator kinematics included 20 degrees of flexion/extension, ± 5 degrees of internal/external rotation, and 6 mm of anterior/posterior translation. All knee components were subjected to 10 million cycles of normal walking (2.6 KN max, freq. 1.8 Hz). Lubricant was 50% alpha-calf serum (20 mg/ml protein) with EDTA. The tibial inserts were from one lot of ram-extruded UHMWPE and sterilized with 3.5-Mrad or 7-Mrad radiation dose. Soak controls were stored unloaded in deionised water for 60 days prior to testing. Implants were studied with high-resolution confocal Raman spectroscopy after 10-Mc duration. The wear of control knees (CoCr/3.5-Mrad) averaged 4.5mm3/Mc while the wear with the ZrO2/7-Mrad combination was unmeasurably low even after 10 million cycle duration. Raman Spectroscopy at 10-Mc duration showed only the presence of the desired tetragonal phase. Thus, the ZrO2/7-Mrad bearing combination should prove excellent for active patients who may otherwise risk high wear rates over many years of use.
Takashi Nakamura, Kimihiro Yamashita and Masashi Neo
R. Tsukamoto et al., "Zirconia Knee Wear and Raman Spectroscopy Studies Compares 3.5-Mrad and 7-Mrad UHMWPE Inserts ", Key Engineering Materials, Vols. 309-311, pp. 1285-1288, 2006