Development of Site-specific Locking Plates for Acetabular Fractures

May 2013
Orthopedics;May2013, Vol. 36 Issue 5, pe593
Academic Journal
Site-specific locking plates have gained popularity for the treatment of fractures. However, the clinical use of a site-specific locking plate for acetabular fractures remains untested due to production limits. To design a universal site-specific locking plate for acetabular fractures, the 3-dimensional (3D) photographic records of 171 pelvises were retrospectively studied to generate a universal posterior innominate bone surface. Using 3D photographical processing software, the 3D coordinate system was reset according to bony landmarks and was scaled based on the acetabular diameter to allow a direct comparison between surfaces. The measured surface was separated into measurement units. At each measurement unit, the authors calculated the average z-axis values in all samples and obtained the 3D coordinate values of the point cloud that could be reconstructed into the universal surface. A plate was subsequently designed in 3D photographical processing software, and the orientation and distribution of locking screws was included. To manufacture a plate, the data were entered into Unigraphics NX version 6.0 software (Siemens PLM Software, Co, Ltd, Plano, Texas) and a CNC digital milling machine (FANUC Co, Ltd, Yamanashi, Japan). The resulting locking plate fit excellently with the reduced bone surface intraoperatively. Plate contouring was avoided intraoperatively. Universal 3.5-mm locking screws locked successfully into the plate, and their orientations were consistent with the design. No screw yielded to acetabular penetration. This method of designing a site-specific acetabular locking plate is practical, and the plates are suitable for clinical use. These site-specific locking plates may be an option for the treatment of acetabular fractures, particularly in elderly patients.


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