Biological rationale for the intramedullary canal as a source of autograft material

David J Hak, Jason L Pittman
Orthopedic Clinics of North America 2010, 41 (1): 57-61; table of contents
Bone harvested by intramedullary reaming offers a minimally invasive alternative to harvesting bone from the iliac crest, which has long been considered the gold standard for autogenous bone grafting. The biologic potential of intramedullary reaming material has been studied both in vitro and in vivo. The material provides osteogenic, osteoinductive, and osteoconductive properties that are comparable to the material harvested from the iliac crest. In addition to the ability to obtain a large volume of bone, the graft harvested by the Reamer-Irrigator-Aspirator has been shown to be rich in growth factors, including BMP-2, TGF-beta1, IGF-I, FGFa, and PDGFbb.

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