Bioresorbable Materials for Orthopedic Applications (Lactide and Glycolide Based)

  • Balaji PrabhuEmail author
  • Andreas Karau
  • Andrew Wood
  • Mahrokh Dadsetan
  • Harald Liedtke
  • Todd DeWitt


A material capable of serving a purpose and then disappearing within the human body is no magic folklore but based on years of rigorous scientific evidence, proven clinical data, and wide commercial use. With over five decades of clinical use as materials for orthopedic applications, these types of materials, known as bioresorbable materials, continue to find use in novel applications such as sutures, screws, stents, scaffolds, and even synthetic skin. Their continued development can be attributed to advancements in novel synthesis techniques, processing technologies, implant design development, and innovative surgical techniques. This has resulted in growing interest for use of these materials in regenerative medicine and patient-specific treatments in the orthopaedic space. With increasing life expectancy, more active lifestyles, younger patient demographics, faster healing, advanced robotic surgical techniques, and reduced hospitalization costs, the need for ‘biologically smart materials’ is continually on the rise. Strategic selection and optimization of a bioresorbable material for a specific application meets this needs leading to the implant effectively serving its purpose in vivo and being able to smartly remove itself without incurring any extraneous effort from the native biological system. Among this class of materials, those that are based on lactide and glycolide have seen the most expansive development and subsequent clinical use.


Bioresorbable Polymer Lactide Glycolide Poly(lactic-co-glycolic acid) Calcium phosphate Mechanical performance Bioactivity 



The authors wish to acknowledge the support provided by the medical device industry manufacturers, academic journals, Evonik Industries colleagues, and staff of the Evonik Project House Medical Devices for their help in the completion of this work.


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Copyright information

© Springer International Publishing AG, part of Springer Nature 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  • Balaji Prabhu
    • 1
    Email author
  • Andreas Karau
    • 2
  • Andrew Wood
    • 1
  • Mahrokh Dadsetan
    • 1
  • Harald Liedtke
    • 2
  • Todd DeWitt
    • 3
  1. 1.Evonik Industries AGBirminghamUSA
  2. 2.Evonik Industries AGDarmstadtGermany
  3. 3.Evonik Industries AGPiscatawayUSA

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