Soaking morselized allograft in bisphosphonate can impair implant fixation

Thomas Jakobsen*, Jørgen Baas, Joan E. Bechtold, Brian Elmengaard, Kjeld Søballe

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

54 Scopus citations


The use of impacted, morselized allograft is a well-established way to provide initial stability of revision joint replacements. We investigated whether rinsing morselized allograft in bisphosphonate and subsequently impacting it around experimental titanium-coated implants would further facilitate biomechanical implant fixation and graft incorporation. In 10 dogs, a pair of titanium implants surrounded by a 2.5-mm gap was inserted into the proximal part of each humerus during two separate surgeries to allow two observation periods. The gap was filled with impacted, morselized allograft soaked in either bisphosphonate (alendronate, 2 mg/mL) or saline (control). Unbound alendronate was not rinsed away. During the first surgery, one pair of implants (alendronate and control) was inserted into one humerus. Eight weeks later, a second pair of implants was inserted into the contralateral humerus. The first pair of implants was observed for 12 weeks and the second pair for 4 weeks. Implants were evaluated by histomorphometry and biomechanical pushout test. We found substantially decreased biomechanical implant fixation for all implants surrounded by impacted, morselized allograft that had been soaked in alendronate. Furthermore, the alendronate treatment blocked formation of new bone and inhibited resorption of the graft material. Although limited by the specific dose of alendronate used and the omission of rinsing away excess bisphosphonate, this study warrants caution and calls for further experimental research before impacting alendronate-soaked morselized allograft around clinical joint replacements.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)195-201
Number of pages7
JournalClinical Orthopaedics and Related Research
StatePublished - Oct 2007
Externally publishedYes


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