Use of porous polyethylene with embedded titanium in orbital reconstruction: A review of 106 patients

Daniel C. Garibaldi, Nicholas T. Iliff, Michael P. Grant, Shannath L. Merbs

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review


PURPOSE: To evaluate our initial experience with a porous polyethylene implant with embedded titanium in orbital reconstruction. METHODS: A retrospective review of the charts was performed for patients receiving at least 1 orbital porous polyethylene implant with embedded titanium from October 2004 through April 2006. Patient demographics, implant type and size, method of fixation, postoperative complications, and length of follow-up were recorded. RESULTS: One-hundred six patients received at least one embedded titanium implant (80 men, 26 women). Age ranged from 3 years to 85 years (mean, 31 years). Indications included orbital fracture repair (102 patients), correction of enophthalmos (3 patients), and reconstruction after tumor resection (1 patient). The average floor implant used was 22.3 mm wide by 27.9 mm long. The average medial wall implant was 13.6 mm tall by 22 mm long. Implants were fixated with 1 or 2 microscrews in 75 patients (70.8%) and placed without fixation in 31 patients (29.2%). Four postoperative complications were noted: a retrobulbar hemorrhage on postoperative day 3 that resolved without sequelae, a vertical overcorrection requiring removal of the implant, a transient oculomotor disturbance, and a screw placed in proximity to the infraorbital nerve canal resulting in hypesthesia and chronic pain that required removal of the screw. In the 3 complications potentially related to the implant, the embedded titanium allowed postoperative implant visualization and guided subsequent management. No implant extrusions or postoperative infections were noted. CONCLUSIONS: Porous polyethylene implants with embedded titanium provide a new alternative to alloplastic implant materials for orbital reconstruction with a profile that combines several advantages of porous polyethylene and titanium implants.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)439-444
Number of pages6
JournalOphthalmic plastic and reconstructive surgery
Issue number6
StatePublished - Nov 1 2007

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Surgery
  • Ophthalmology


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