Crevice corrosion of implants recovered after tibial plateau leveling osteotomy in dogs

Vet Surg. 2006 Jul;35(5):438-44. doi: 10.1111/j.1532-950X.2006.00172.x.


Objective: To describe corrosion discovered on implants recovered from dogs after tibial plateau leveling osteotomy (TPLO).

Study design: Descriptive.

Animals: Dogs (n=4) that had TPLO (n=7) approximately 3 years earlier.

Methods: Implants were recovered surgically and lightly cleaned before visual inspection, scanning electron microscopy (SEM) and energy-dispersive X-ray analysis (EDX).

Results: Multiple corrosion sites were found on the recesses of each plate; invariably, there was a corroded area present on that part of the bone screw which had been in contact with a corrosion site on a plate. Most corroded regions featured attached, nonmetallic material believed to be a precipitate arising from interaction with the local environment during electrochemical corrosion. SEM examination of TPLO plates revealed surface porosity, particularly visible in the screw hole recesses.

Conclusions: Surface irregularities and porosity of TPLO plates--a consequence of the casting process--are initiation sites for corrosion which, in concert with the crevice geometry between the plate and screw, result in the observed corrosion defects.

Clinical relevance: Implants used for TPLO, a commonly performed veterinary orthopedic procedures may corrode generating a number of chemical species that have the potential to cause disease.

Publication types

  • Case Reports

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Anterior Cruciate Ligament / surgery
  • Anterior Cruciate Ligament Injuries*
  • Bone Plates / veterinary*
  • Diagnosis, Differential
  • Dogs / injuries*
  • Dogs / surgery
  • Equipment Failure
  • Female
  • Male
  • Osteotomy / veterinary*
  • Postoperative Complications / surgery
  • Postoperative Complications / veterinary
  • Tibia / surgery*