PHILIPPE PLAILLY / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY PHILIPPE PLAILLY / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY
Bone graft. Image 1 of 2. X-ray of coral balls (upper right) inserted into a patient's thigh bone (femur). The coral (Biocoral) is a biomaterial. It is placed in bones to promote new growth and to strengthen fractured bones, especially those caused by osteoporosis, where mineral loss causes brittle bones. Biocoral is produced from natural coral. It is similar to bone tissue and its porosity allows new bone growth to penetrate and replace it as it is absorbed by the body. It can be combined with antibiotics which are also absorbed, reducing infection risks. For the same patient ten months later, see image M580/201.
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