Next Article in Journal
A Truly Second-Order and Unconditionally Stable Thermal Lattice Boltzmann Method
Previous Article in Journal
Gear Wear Process Monitoring Using a Sideband Estimator Based on Modulation Signal Bispectrum
Previous Article in Special Issue
Composition Distribution, Damping and Thermal Properties of the Thickness-Continuous Gradient Epoxy/Polyurethane Interpenetrating Polymer Networks
Article Menu
Issue 3 (March) cover image

Export Article

Open AccessReview
Appl. Sci. 2017, 7(3), 276;

Cranioplasty and Craniofacial Reconstruction: A Review of Implant Material, Manufacturing Method and Infection Risk

Faculty of Engineering and IT, The University of Sydney, Sydney NSW 2006, Australia
Sydney Medical School, The University of Sydney, Sydney NSW 2006, Australia
Sydney Spine Institute; Sydney NSW 1805, Australia
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Academic Editor: Daniel X.B. Chen
Received: 30 November 2016 / Accepted: 6 March 2017 / Published: 10 March 2017
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Bio-Inspired Applications of Composites)
Full-Text   |   PDF [661 KB, uploaded 14 March 2017]   |  


Analysis of current literature highlights a wide variation in reported infection risk for different materials in cranial repair. The purpose of these composite materials are to mimic natural bone and assist in restoring function (structurally and aesthetically) to the human skull. This review aims to examine the meta-data in order to provide an amalgamated overview of potential trends between implant material, manufacturing method and infection risk, in order to provide a core reference point for future studies surrounding emerging biomedical materials in the fields of cranioplasty by providing base point for understanding the capabilities and limitations of current technologies. Methods: A search for articles was conducted, with the following criteria seen as fundamental in providing an accurate picture of the current landscape: publication in the last decade, provision of a numerical value for both number of implants and infection cases, patient sample of 10+, adult patients, and cranioplasty/cranial repair. Results: A total of 41 articles were seen to meet the author’s inclusion criteria. Average infection rates per material ranged between 2.04% and 10.98%. The results indicate that there is variation between materials in regards to total infection risk, however, depending on the materials compared, this value may be insignificant. Alternative risk factors associated with infection, including surgical time, revisions and previous infection, have a greater impact on infection potential than material variation. Comparison of fabrication methods did highlight a notable effect on average infection rate. Trends can be observed showing that materials with greater levels of surface interaction and active support of tissue ingrowth presented greater infection resistance. Such characteristics are due to the physical structures of the implants. Conclusions: It can be said that the manufacturing methods can influence biomedical materials to assist in minimizing implant infection risk. View Full-Text
Keywords: cranioplasty; craniofacial; bone; reconstruction; material; graft; infection cranioplasty; craniofacial; bone; reconstruction; material; graft; infection

Figure 1

This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited (CC BY 4.0).

Share & Cite This Article

MDPI and ACS Style

Kwarcinski, J.; Boughton, P.; Ruys, A.; Doolan, A.; van Gelder, J. Cranioplasty and Craniofacial Reconstruction: A Review of Implant Material, Manufacturing Method and Infection Risk. Appl. Sci. 2017, 7, 276.

Show more citation formats Show less citations formats

Note that from the first issue of 2016, MDPI journals use article numbers instead of page numbers. See further details here.

Related Articles

Article Metrics

Article Access Statistics



[Return to top]
Appl. Sci. EISSN 2076-3417 Published by MDPI AG, Basel, Switzerland RSS E-Mail Table of Contents Alert
Back to Top