Metallic bone plates are used during orthopaedic reconstructive surgery to provide alignment and fixation of two or more bone segments. The strength and stiffness of the plate must allow the bone to heal properly while providing structural support. Quantification of bending characteristics, such as bending strength and bending stiffness, can provide surgeons with insight into plate performance, while allowing researchers to compare plate materials and designs. The fatigue life of the device over a specific time period or range of maximum loading must also be determined.

Testing is based on standard ASTM F382 - Standard Specification and Test Method for Metallic Bone Plates. The test fixture accurately replicates bending movement during a single cycle test, as well as fatigue evaluation of the plate material and design. The four-point bending fixture is comprised of two loading rollers near the center of the loading fixture and two support rollers at the ends of the fixture. The rollers are available in various sizes to cater for different size bone plates.

The fixture was designed for use with our 8870 Series Servohydraulic Test Systems, which is ideally suited to both static and dynamic tests. The set up can also incorporate a deflectometry system (both in and out of an environmental bath) to measure central deflection of the fixation device.

We recommend that you review the standard to fully understand its requirements.