Explant Analysis

A fast, cost effective service
to improve implant performance

Collecting data to improve the future of orthopaedics

We evaluate explants to determine those factors which contribute to clinical success or failure.

This information can then be used to inform pre-op implant selection, streamline follow up care and improve outcomes for patients and healthcare providers alike.

All our methodology is bespoke, peer reviewed and validated.

"The information from adverse incident reports can help identify faults with medical devices and may prevent similar incidents happening again."
From MHRA - View Report

Our process

Having received explants from either a surgeon or patient, we carry out our analysis and deliver a comprehensive report, usually within 24 hours.

The analysis will identify markers that can't be seen by the human eye, capturing information that is important for the host as well as current and future patients. Viewed this way, explant analysis can be compared to the examination of an aircraft's black box.

Ortho Analysis

The implant retrieval process

We offer safe and simple shipping of explanted components from the operating theatre to ExplantLab. 

On reaching the lab, the components are cleaned and disinfected (or sterilised, if required) using the same technology used in hospital sterile services departments.

They are then inspected by a member of our experienced lab team before being analysed using state of the art machinery combined with bespoke machine learning algorithms.

Bearing surfaces

We use automated programmes to drive high accuracy coordinate measuring machines (CMMs) to identify the unworn sections of bearing surfaces and determine their original geometry. The component can then be reverse-engineered back to its original shape from these unworn areas.

By comparing the actual surface (the post revision geometry) of a component to the original (as manufactured) surface, the magnitude of wear can be calculated and mapped.

CMMs are capable of scanning most surfaces, including the more complicated geometries such as knee and ankle replacements.

Taper junctions

Similar to the bearing surfaces, we use a CMM to scan over the taper surfaces and identify the unworn areas of the components. By comparing this to the original manufactured geometry, the taper can be reverse engineered.

Using bespoke software to compare the post-revision shape with the original, we are able to measure and map the material loss.

High-resolution light microscopy

We use a Mitutoyo MF-A1010D light microscope capable of producing high resolution images at up to x1000 magnification.

This microscope can also work in conjunction with iWorks
software to convert captured data into three-dimensional
image reconstructions.

Genetic research

Read our research papers

We are currently carrying out a large genetic study on the development of adverse reactions to metal implants and have already identified a group of genes which may put patients at increased risk of developing soft tissue reactions.

Get in touch if you have patients of concern or would like to be involved in our ongoing research.

ExplantLab Genetic Research
Supporting Healthcare Professionals

Help us get better at helping you

Our mission is to help eliminate implant failure. But our research relies on accessing the crucial information held by explants for us to improve on what we do. So, whether you're a surgeon or a patient, we welcome your explants for analysis.

Just email or call us, and we'll send you an easy-to-use retrieval pack.