chapter  3
24 Pages

Degradation and Corrosion of Biomaterials

All biomaterials when implanted in the human body induce a biomaterialtissue response, which can be attributed to complex interactions from a vast array of material properties, including physicochemical, mechanical, morphology, and surface properties. Since the present biomaterials are neither truly inert nor totally integrated with tissues, the ultimate goal has been to minimize or control the host tissue response by modifying biomaterial properties. The surface properties of biomaterial have profound consequences on cellular and host responses. For this reason, we must understand the unique properties of surface and the methods to characterize surfaces in striving toward more “biocompatible materials,” which either evokes a minimal inammatory response or elicits a specic cellular response. Corrosion of biomaterials or implants is one of the important aspects of biocompatibility and greatly affects the service of medical devices. No metallic biomaterial is totally resistant to corrosion within the human body. All medical implants made of metals and alloys undergo chemical or electrochemical dissolution due to the complex and corrosive nature of the human body environment, which leads to failure of implants before fullling their intended function. Hence, it is highly desirable to fully discover corrosion-resistant biomaterials to minimize the failure rate of medical implants. In the following sections, we will discuss the degradation, corrosion, and biocompatibility aspects of biomaterials or implants.