Bioresorbable Polymers for Biomedical Applications - Pages 391-422 Woodhead Publishing Series in Biomaterials: Number 120 Edited by Giuseppe Perale and Jons Hilborn
E.C. Ekwueme, J.M. Patel, J.W. Freeman, S. Danti
The skeletal system provides structure, protection, and movement to the body through bones, cartilages, tendons, and ligaments. Many congenital, traumatic, and degenerative diseases may affect the function of skeletal tissues during the life span, leading to the necessity of very specific replacements and treatments. In the widespread and mechanically constraining scenario of skeletal pathologies, biodegradable polymers can play unique roles that should not only be confined to adjuvant bulk devices. Tissue engineering has recently renewed the attention towards this class of biomaterials, enchantingly exploiting their outstanding versatility to accomplish smart and biomimetic solutions to surgical and therapeutic needs. This chapter describes the most recent achievements in this field, focusing on tissue type- and subtype-specific replacements, while taking into account clinical applications and future trends.