Bone Debris: Dead Matter or Vital Osteoblasts

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Background Mechanical manipulation, pressure, and temperature increase can induce bone necrosis during intramedullary reaming.Methods In this study, the bone debris obtained after reaming 18 sheep tibiae was analyzed to investigate its vitality by measuring alkaline phosphatase activity. Two different reamer designs were used for the project. Bone cells were first cultivated in a specific growth medium, counted 3 weeks after the reaming procedure, and then cultivated for another 5 weeks.Results At the end of the project, qualitative evaluation showed positive alkaline phosphatase activity in most of the cases, and quantitative evaluation also showed enzyme activity. The positive alkaline phosphatase results were independent of the reamer sizes and reamer design. No significant results were obtained from a comparison of different reamer sizes and designs. This indicates that osteoblasts survive after correctly performed reaming.Conclusion The results prove the vitality of the bone debris and confirm clinical observations.

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