Mechanical Performance of External Fixators With Wires for the Treatment of Bone Fractures—Part II: Wire Tension and Slippage

[+] Author and Article Information
C. Delprete, M. M. Gola

Dipartimento di Meccanica, Politecnico di Torino, 10100 Torino, Italia

J Biomech Eng 115(1), 37-42 (Feb 01, 1993) (6 pages) doi:10.1115/1.2895468 History: Received July 18, 1990; Revised June 18, 1992; Online March 17, 2008


The work shows correct procedures needed in order to gather reliable data from measurement of displacements versus axial load in a laboratory mounting of the Ilizarov external fixator. The mechanism of settling after load cycling is investigated. Detension under load is a major problem of wires. By means of vibration frequency measurements, tests on single wire allow determination of reduction in wire tension due to transverse loading: it is found that, almost independently from the amount of clamp tightening, the tension reaches a lower limit related only to the transverse load and not related to pretension. It is shown that, for higher clamp tightening torques, wire detension must be attributed to permanent plastic deformation of the wires; moreover, it is shown that the unavoidable errors in the spacing of the tensioned wires lead to marked decrease of their stiffness under transverse load.

Copyright © 1993 by The American Society of Mechanical Engineers
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