Fueled by more active lifestyles and increased life expectancy, the market for knee, hip, and other replacement body joints is on the rise. According to ORTHOWORLD, orthopedic product sales accounted for more than $55.5 billion in worldwide sales in 2022.
Thanks to significant advancements in materials and new or improved surface finishing technologies, today’s artificial hips and knees can last more than 20 years, giving the recipient decades of comfort and agility.
Parts that are finished using modern mass finishingand shot blastingmethods play a key role in extending the lifespan of orthopedic implants.
Rosler has extensive experience in these processes which often include cleaning, deburring/edge radiusing, surface smoothing, post-casting surface preparation, machining, CNC grinding, and, of course, final finishing. These finishing technologies make big differences in the quality and performance of such products.
While choosing the right implant material is of utmost importance, as discussed in our previous Orthopedic Implant Series post, the significance of optimum surface treatment throughout the entire implant manufacturing process cannot be overstated. This relates not only to the right surface finish, but also total compliance with the specified tight dimensional tolerances.
The functionality of an orthopedic implant is determined by the perfect match between the various implant components. This depends, to a large extent, on the surface treatment procedure(s).
For millions of individuals, orthopedic implants provide the ability to regain mobility and reduce pain. Just as surgical skill is required to implant these artificial joints, so is skillful construction and finish of the joint components themselves.
Our Orthopedic Implant Series continues with an overview of the most common materials used for these endoprosthetic implants.
To date, the most common materials have been titanium, titanium alloys, and cobalt-chromium alloys. Both materials are very tough, resistant to corrosion, highly biocompatible, and absolutely reliable.
Advancements in medical technology now allow for the development of Patient-Specific Implants (PSI). Specialized computer programs analyze x-rays, ultrasound, and MRI images to create surgical guides, tools, and implants tailored to the patient’s unique anatomy.
While still emerging, many medical industry suppliers have received FDA approval for PSI use. Like traditional implants, these implants must be carefully finished once created to ensure the work piece meets stringent medical safety standards while promoting patient comfort and long wear life.
The benefits of PSI use include shorter surgery times, better surgical outcomes, and cost savings.
True to its “apply innovation” tagline, Renishaw’s Medical and Healthcare Division has found great success in additively manufacturing PSI. Using CT scan-to-CAD software, one of the company’s most innovative advances is creating cranial plates using titanium powder.
When determining how to finish the implants to precise medical requirements and surgical demands, Renishaw trusted Rosler for help with mass finishing.
Joint reconstruction implants are subject to the same zero-defect performance and reliability standards as any other implant. However, because two components are always interacting with each other, dimensional accuracy is of particular importance.
Within the medical industry, surface finishing experts such as Rosler assist implant manufacturers in achieving the exact finish needed for each surface of the joint.
In addition to increasing product popularity and demand for the manufacturer and providing medical professionals with safe and dependable joint replacements, ensuring that orthopedic implants have the exact finishing required enables the joint to function longer and more comfortably for the patient.
worldwide sales at nearly $10 billion annually, there is a high demand for
spinal implants. These implants are subject to very specific and strict surface
finishing requirements to ensure longevity and fixation to bone.
Mass finishing and shot blasting play key roles in creating the right finish for spinal implants, not only for intermediate surface treatment after forging, casting, machining, additive manufacturing, etc., but also for placing the final surface finish before implantation.
Mass finishing is a highly versatile finishing technology that can be used for a wide variety of different surface treatment operations including those in the medical industry. Therefore, it is no surprise that mass finishing processes are utilized at practically every manufacturing stage for all kinds of orthopedic implants.
Rosler Metal Finishing has decades of experience in mass finishing. In this installment of the Joint Reconstruction Series, we will compare the various machines used to provide precise finishing for endoprosthetic manufacturers.
Examples ofMass Finishing
Mass finishing is used for a variety of joint
replacement work pieces including:
Descaling and edge radiusing of hip stems, knee femorals, and other
implants after forging or casting, e.g. lost wax or investment casting.
Deburring and surface smoothing of various implants after belt or CNC
Final polishing of knee femorals, femoral heads, and the inside of
acetabular cups to Ra = 0.8 micro inches as the last finishing stage before