Biological and biomechanical effects of vancomycin and meropenem in acrylic bone cement

Massimiliano Baleani, Cecilia Persson, Carola Zolezzi, Agnese Andollina, Anna Maria Borrelli, Domenico Tigani
Journal of Arthroplasty 2008, 23 (8): 1232-8
Antibiotic-loaded bone cement is extensively used in joint arthroplasty, but increasing bacteria resistance against common antibiotics has lead to a demand for alternative drugs. However, bone cement containing new additives must be characterized both biologically and mechanically. This study evaluated elution kinetics, antibacterial activity, and mechanical properties for cement loaded with vancomycin and/or meropenem. The presence of meropenem broadened the antibacterial spectrum and enhanced the elution of vancomycin. The mechanical properties were negatively affected by 1.0 g of vancomycin, but these detrimental effects were acceptable when only 0.5 g of vancomycin were added to a cement containing 0.5 g of meropenem. Further investigations on this formulation with adjusted antibiotic amounts are, however, necessary to reach the optimal compromise between the antibacterial and the mechanical properties of the bone cement.

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