Successful completion of certain surgical procedures, such as vertebrae fusions, hip and knee replacements, requires the use of high performance implant tools. During the course of the procedure these tools are subjected to repeated impacts from the surgeon’s hammer and must perform flawlessly. Tool failure can lead to complications during surgery such as unwanted debris in the surgical field, excessive trauma to surrounding bone or tissue and longer time spent under anesthesia.
It is critical therefore for manufacturers of implant tools to earn the confidence and respect of surgeons by providing a product that has been thoroughly tested under end-use conditions. Without sophisticated test equipment, manufactures may not be able to accurately simulate force, geometries and other impact characteristics that the tools will be subjected to in the operating room.
To identify any design features of the implant tool most likely to fail a test setup on a CEAST 9350 with High Energy option to simulate surgical impact conditions was developed. Custom fixturing was assembled to grip the implant tool and a 2 inch spherical tup insert, which replicates the face of a surgical hammer, was used. The Anti-Rebound device was also installed to prevent secondary impacts on the tool.
The DAS (Data Acquisition System) and Visual Impact software were set up so that the tower could perform automatic cyclic testing – effectively reproducing the same motions of a surgeon repeatedly impacting the implant tool with a hammer.
The performance of instrumented impact testing on finished components offers information, not only as to how well an existing design may perform, but offers data and insight into how existing designs can be improved.
Using the configuration provided here a medical tool manufacturer can methodically and consistently simulate the energy level, frequency, quantity and geometry of impacts delivered to the end product that will enable them to improve both the design and quality of the tools offered,