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One of the novel treatments for spinal bone diseases is by delivering the stem cells to the bone using introducers. The stem cell delivery treatment indeed requires training to prevent malpractices. The training usually involves phantoms, which are expected to comply with the mechanical properties of their biological counterparts. Therefore, residents will feel the tactile feedback similar to the bones. Some high elastic modulus polymers, such as polyetheretherketone (PEEK), polyetherketoneketone (PEKK), and polycarbonate (PC), have been reported to have similar toughness to spinal bones. This study sought to compare the three polymers: PEEK, PEKK, and PC, as materials for spinal models reconstituting C1 - L5 vertebral bodies using finite element analysis (FEA). The three polymers were in the form of 3D printed products. The spinal models were obtained from an online database. The FEA was performed using a static structural mechanics module. Uniaxial tensile, compressive, and shear stresses were applied to the vertebral body models, resulting in deformation magnitudes and von Mises stresses (vMS). The resulting vMS were subsequently compared with the ultimate strength of each material, resulting in ratios of vMS vs. ultimate strength, hence MTR, MCR, and MSR. Smaller MTR, MCR, and MSR values indicate better performance of materials. MTR, MCR, and MSR results showed that PEEK has the best performance amongst materials.

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Conference paper

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