Degradation of metals by interaction with the environment is called corrosion. In most industrial corrosion situations the damage to the object is of main concern, while the effect of the corrosion process on the environment is either negligible, or of secondary importance. For devices inserted in the human body, on the other hand, both the degradation of the device and the effect of the interaction on the physiological system, local or systemic, are of equal importance. Corrosion degradation may result in a loss of mass, mechanical integrity, functionality and, sometimes, esthetic quality, while the release of corrosion products and the flow of the corrosion currents may cause inflammation, allergic reactions, local necrosis and many other health problems. Although the intensity of the interaction is an important parameter, an equally important factor is the identity of the corrosion products and their toxicity, carcinogenicity, allergenicity and other potentially hazardous properties.


Stress Corrosion Crack Corrosion Potential Corrosion Current Density Corrosion Fatigue Electrochemical Corrosion 


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media, LLC 2009

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.School of Materials Science and EngineeringGeorgia Institute of TechnologyAtlantaUSA

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