Medical Devices

Understanding Trauma Implants - A Comprehensive Guide

Trauma Implants

Orthopedic trauma is an injury to the body's musculoskeletal system due to any accident, fall, overuse of bones or joints, or sports injury. An external force causes the injury. It may range from a hairline crack or fracture to a severe life-challenging injury. Orthopedic surgeons treat these orthopedic injuries to promptly restore the functionality of the damaged or broken body part, relieving the associated pain and discomfort with utmost efficiency and accuracy. Trauma implants have a key role in treating these injuries. They include bone plates, nails, screws, pins, wires, and prostheses that support and stabilize the broken bone.

Due to their significant role in treating orthopedic injuries, trauma implants must pass stringent standards and tests of manufacture, quality, and performance to ensure their proper functionality.

This blog lets us understand the various trauma implants, their material composition, the characteristics of an ideal implant, and their role in orthopedic treatment.

Trauma Implants and Their Types

Known as Osteosynthetic implants, trauma implants are orthopedic implants used to realign and fix a fractured bone. Osteosynthesis is a surgical procedure to fix and treat a fractured bone using mechanical devices like bone screws, bone plates, wires, and pins for bone setting, and also special implants like cranial (in part of the skull that encloses the brain) and spinal implants (for vertebrae fusion). The common types are-

  • Bone screws- Bone screws are common for bone fixation that come in different types and sizes. They prevent implant movement and bridge the gap between the implant and the injured bone site, thus reducing the stress. These are titanium or stainless screws. The different types of screws are cortical bone screws that are fine pitch, cancellous bone screws that are coarse, titanium screw sets, and headless compression screws. The screws can be fully or partially threaded and can also be cannulated.
  • Bone plates- Bone plates minimize the gap between the ends of the fractured bone by bringing them together. They restrict the movement of the broken bone and allow it to rest and heal. They are fixed using bone screws. The various types of bone plates are Neutralization plates (balance the load of the fracture by spanning the area), Bridging plates (provide length and alignment to the fractured bone and stabilize it), Buttress plates (hold the ends of long bones), Tension plates (they are wires securing the broken bones), and Compression plates (use pressure between the fractured bones to promote healing).
  • Nails- Known as rods, nails are used in long fractured bones, such as in the femur or tibia, to prevent the ends of the bones from overlapping. They aim to align the broken bones by immobilizing them. They are fixed in the inter-medullary canal of the long bones, holding the fracture together.
  • Pins - Pins are used for minimal fractures as provisional internal support to ensure proper alignment and fixation of the fracture using other implants.
  • Wires – Wires are flexible and easy-to-bend trauma implants used for small bone fractures and in cases of fractures with minimum load bearing. They are used in internal fixation, tendon repair, and skeletal traction.
  • Staples- In case of multiple fractures resulting in several bone fragments, staples are used to fix and reconstruct the broken bones internally. They ensure the repair of soft tissue damage.
  • Prostheses- Prostheses are artificial orthopedics implants used to replace the missing bone or joint. They also provide support for broken bones. Prostheses are common for hips, knee, shoulders, and arms. They ensure joint and bone alignment, restoring full range of motion and functionality of the fractured bone or joint.


Material Composition and Surface of Trauma Implants

Orthopedic trauma implants play a crucial role in surgical outcomes and are subject to strict quality conformation and performance standards. The material composition and surface finishing requirements of these implants significantly impact the healing and recovery of the fractured bones.

  • Material composition: These implants are commonly made of stainless steel alloy or titanium alloy. These components vary in ductility, bio-compatibility, corrosion resistance, and tensile strength. The selection of the trauma implant depends on the surgical need of the fracture.
  • Surface Texture: Orthopedics trauma implants have different surface textures and finishing depending on their role in healing and recovering the fractured bone. In the case of trauma implants, some are subject to removal upon fracture healing, and some might stay permanently fixed based on the patient's clinical needs. These implants require smooth surfacing and rounded edges to prevent the bones from getting attached to the implanted material and avoid pain and discomfort resulting from sharp-edged devices.


Characteristics of an Ideal Trauma Implant

The prime objective of orthopedic trauma implants is to stabilize the fracture, restore the bone joint, preserve blood supply to the fractured site, restore the functionality of the bone, and provide prompt healing, ensuring mobility to the patient. An ideal trauma implant must possess the following characteristics.

  • Bio-compatibility and corrosion resistance to prevent inflammation resulting from contamination of bacteria. They must also avoid reactions with fluids in the body.
  • High tensile strength to sustain bending and weight loads.
  • High ductility to ensure that they fit and adapt to the shape of bones before implantation.
  • Very low or no osteo-integration to enable smooth removal of the implant after bone healing.
  • Smooth surface with sound gliding features that enable tendons to glide over the bone plates without any damage.
  • Zero magnetic characteristics.


MERIL’s Trauma Implant Portfolio

Meril’s trauma implant portfolio is a part of its dedicated Orthopedic product range that is used in the realignment and fixation of fractured bones. These products make trauma treatment optimal and effective ensuring better surgical and patient outcomes.


Fractures are common, and the need for bone realignment and bone fixation is essential for restoring the functionality of the broken bones. Orthopedic trauma implants aim to stabilize and repair the broken bone, thus relieving the pain and other discomfort resulting from such fractures. Some implants are removable upon bone healing, while some are permanently fixated, depending on the need in individual cases. They have a crucial role in the success of surgical outcomes.

Trauma implants are subject to stringent quality standards and performance. The right type of implant facilitates timely healing and prompt recovery. Eventually, it improves the mobility and functionality of the fractured bone.