Title page for ETD etd-0418102-220607

Type of Document Master's Thesis
Author Reeves, Michael Wayne
URN etd-0418102-220607
Title An Evaluation of Storage, Hydration and Reporting Protocols for Biomechanical Testing of the Rat Femoral Neck
Degree Master of Science (M.S.)
Department Human Ecology
Advisory Committee
Advisor Name Title
Maren Hegsted Committee Co-Chair
Michael J. Keenan Committee Co-Chair
Yan Chen Committee Member
  • density
  • rat
  • frozen storage
  • femoral neck
  • protocol
  • bone strength
  • Young's modulus
  • plastic strain
  • biomechanical testing
  • vacuum
  • saline
  • behavior
  • hydration
Date of Defense 2001-12-17
Availability unrestricted
The current study evaluated the effect of frozen storage and hydration under vacuum on

density and breaking strength of the rat femoral neck. Femurs were frozen in saline for periods of

15, 34, 122, or 831 days.

No significant effect on bone density was detected for freezing periods of 15, 34, and 122

days, indicating that frozen storage of specimens in saline is moisture-preserving for periods up to

four months. Freezing periods of 34 and 122 days were used to examine the effect of frozen

storage on bone biomechanical bahavior. Plastic strain increased for the 34-day storage period

(p=0.0453) and decreased for the 122-day storage period (p<0.0001). Strain to failure

(p<0.0001) and yield strain (p<0.0001) decreased and Young’s modulus (p=0.0018) increased

after 122 days of frozen storage.

Hydration for one hour after the 15-day storage period significantly decreased density

compared to fresh (p=0.0407) and frozen-stored (p=0.0008) specimens. In the 122-day storage

experiment, hydration for three hours significantly decreased density compared to the frozen-

stored bones, both between (p=0.0059) and within samples (p=0.0270). Hydration did not

significantly alter the density of bones frozen for 831 days.

Hydration of bones frozen for 122-days decreased yield strain (p=0.0100) and strain at

failure (p=0.0214) compared to fresh bones. Plastic strain (p=0.0474) and strain at failure

(p=0.00116) both increased and Young’s modulus decreased for hydrated bones compared to

frozen-stored bones. Bones frozen for 831 days and hydrated for either one hour or three hours

showed an increase in plastic strain (p=0.0469) with the longer hydration time.

These results indicate frozen storage for up to 122 days does not affect bone density, but

does alter the biomechanical behavior of the rat femoral neck for storage periods as short as 34

days. Hydration decreases density in bones frozen for up to 122 days, but extending the frozen

storage period to 831 days prevents additional dehydration of stored bones. The biomechanical

bahavior of the rat femoral neck is affected by hydration for bones frozen for both 122 and 831


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