Barber FA, Spenciner DB, Zani BG, Melidone R. “Suture-Based Debris Behavior in the Draining Lymph Nodes of a Porcine Knee: A Study of Silicone, Polyethylene and Carbon.”
Purpose/Methods: To determine whether debris from a silicone core suture has an observable intra-articular or extra-articular impact or can be shown to migrate into the lymphatic system. Using a porcine stifle joint model, 2 study groups were created. One group used silicone-suture particles with an outer sheath of ultrahigh molecular-weight polyethylene, an inner polyester sheath and a medical-grade silicone/sodium chloride-filled core. The second group used a mixture of 3 vitreous carbon particles sizes.
Conclusions: Carbon particles in the porcine knee migrated into the lymph nodes (iliac 100%; inguinal 50%, popliteal 0); gross discoloration was observed in 8 of 12 specimens. Silicone-suture particles could not be found in the lymph nodes, and no macroscopic joint damage was observed.
Clinical relevance: The clinical use of a suture containing a silicone/salt central core is common, and the porcine lymphatic model suggests that this type of suture material does not result in clinically significant silicone particulates.