The aim of this study was to evaluate the identification of polyethylene (PE) particles in relatively thick methylmethacrylate (MMA) sections widely used in bone implant research. The sensitivity and specificity were compared between decalcified paraffin-embedded oil red O (ORO) stained and MMA-embedded sections using polarized light. Furthermore, we introduced a grading system to semiquantify the level of PE particles in peri-implant tissue. Paraffin-embedded and MMA-embedded sections were compared concerning intra-observer agreement of the grading system. Moreover, the semiquantitative assessment of particle level was compared between the two section types. We found a sensitivity and specificity of polarized light of 100% for both paraffin ORO-stained and MMA sections. The intra-observer agreement on both types was comparable and acceptable. The ratings of differently processed blocks (MMA- and paraffin-embedded) originating from the same bone implant specimen showed good correlation. Our study showed that relatively thick MMA sections were just as suitable as ORO-stained paraffin sections concerning peri-implant PE particle migration analysis. MMA sections do not allow analysis at cellular level, but unbiased estimation of bone ingrowth into the implant surface based on stereological principles is possible.
Journal of Microscopy, 2005, Vol 218, Issue Pt 3, p. 225-32
Animals; Azo Compounds; Bone and Bones; Dogs; Joint Prosthesis; Methylmethacrylate; Microscopy, Polarization; Paraffin Embedding; Polyethylene; Prostheses and Implants; Sensitivity and Specificity