Mechanical testing of a steel-reinforced epoxy resin bar and clamp for external skeletal fixation of long-bone fractures in cats

BJ Leitch, AJ Worth
2018 Figshare  
AIMS: To provide veterinarians with confidence when using a commercially available epoxy resin in external skeletal fixators (ESF), testing was conducted to determine exothermia during curing of the epoxy resin compared to polymethylmethacrylate (PMMA), the hardness of the epoxy resin as a bar over 16 weeks, and the strength of the epoxy resin bar compared with metal clamps in similarly constructed Type 1a ESF constructs simulating the repair of feline long bone fractures. METHODS: Exothermia
more » ... the epoxy resin during curing was tested against PMMA with surface temperatures recorded over the first 15 minutes of curing, using four samples of each product. The hardness of 90 identical epoxy resin bars was tested by subjecting them to cyclic loads (1,000 cycles of 20.5 N, every 7 days) over a 16-week period and impact testing 10 bars every 2 weeks. Ten bars that were not subjected to cyclic loads were impact tested at 0 weeks and another 10 at 16 weeks. Strength of the epoxy resin product, as a bar and clamp composite, was tested against metal SK and Kirschner-Ehmer (KE) clamps and bars in Type 1a, tied-in intramedullary pin, ESF constructs with either 90° or 75° pin placement, subjected to compressive and bending loads to 75 N. RESULTS: The maximum temperature during curing of the epoxy resin (min 39.8, max 43.0)°C was less than the PMMA (min 85.2, max 98.5)°C (p<0.001). There was no change in hardness of the epoxy resin bars over the 16 weeks of cyclic loading (p=0.58). There were no differences between the median strength of the epoxy resin, SK or KE ESF constructs in compression or bending when tested to 75 N (p>0.05). Stiffness of constructs with 75° pin placement was greater for SK than epoxy resin constructs in compression (p=0.046), and was greater for KE than epoxy resin constructs in bending (p=0.033). CONCLUSIONS: The epoxy resin tested was found to be less exothermic than PMMA; bars made from the epoxy resin showed durability over an expected fracture healing timeframe and had mechanical strength c [...]
doi:10.6084/m9.figshare.5913490 fatcat:drnc6qp6t5cz7dtvk62zihbzse