OBJECTIVE: Mandibular alloplastic bone trays have an unacceptably high rate of extrusion. The introduction of resorbable mesh has renewed interest in such trays. This study evaluates the effect of resorbable trays on bone graft healing in a dog model. DESIGN: Unilateral, 20-mm mandibular body defects were created in 10 dogs, and repaired with cancellous bone grafts. A resorbable mesh bone tray was applied to 5 animals. All mandibles underwent gross examination, 4-point stress testing, and histologic and radiographic analysis. RESULTS: All animals had excellent bony unions. There was one intraoral mesh exposure. There was no difference between the control and treatment groups with regard to clinical findings, radiologic analysis, stress testing (P = 0.17), or histologic analysis (P = 0.66). CONCLUSION: The metabolic breakdown products of the resorbable mesh do not inhibit bone healing or strength. Resorbable mesh trays are a viable modality for reconstruction of segmental mandibular defects in a dog model.
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