Variability of Mineral Density in Coralline Hydroxyapatite Spheres: Study by Quantitative Computed Tomography

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Quantitative computed tomography (qCT) can be employed to determine the mineral density (MD) of bone or similar mineralized alloplastic materials with high precision. Porous spheres made from coralline hydroxy-apatite are currently used for reconstruction after enucleation procedures. The long-term fate of these implants is unknown. Using qCT, MD was determined in hydroxyapatite spheres prior to implantation. Intersphere MD varied up to 200% with a near Gaussian distribution. Intrasphere MD did not vary significantly when comparing central to peripheral sites. The density of coralline hydroxyapatite spheres was ~400% greater than the density of newly formed endochondral bone. This study demonstrates that qCT data were an invaluable tool for MD determination, detecting a marked variability in hydroxyapatite MDs. Because the long-term fate of these implants is unknown and fibro-vascular ingrowth is an important event in the integration of these implants, monitoring of MDs of coralline hydroxyapatite implants is of interest.

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