Titanium is a rare and expensive metal which has special uses, but what do you really know about it? Titanium has unique properties which make it ideal for some medical components and it is a very important part of the medical industry today. Here are some of the ways that titanium is making life much better for many people.
What is Titanium?
Titanium is a grayish colored metal with exceptional resistance to corrosion. In addition, it is one of the strongest metals on the planet by density. In some instances, it is on par with steel as far as strength. These two properties are essential for medical components like implants. It’s absolutely vital for implants to be very strong and not to corrode.
Titanium can be alloyed with other metals to increase the desired properties. For example, medical grade titanium (6AL4V) called grade 5, is made by adding four percent vanadium and six percent aluminum. Although there are other grades of titanium alloys used, grade 5 is the most popular and is also used for body piercing material.
* Benefits of Grade 5 Titanium
* Grade 5 titanium comes with a number of important benefits. For example:
* Extremely strong and lightweight – some metals are very strong but can be heavy. This is not the case with titanium.
* High corrosion resistance
* Ductility – can be made into wire.
* Does not melt easily – in order to melt titanium, it must be heated to temperatures above 1650 degrees Celsius (3000 degrees Fahrenheit).
* Low electrical and thermal conductance
* Low magnetic properties – this is an important consideration as titanium implants will not interfere with magnetic resonance imaging testing (MRI).
* Non toxic to the human body – many kinds of metals can cause problems if they are introduced into the body, but not titanium.
* Compares to human bone – its elasticity and flexibility is similar to bone.
As you can see from the wide range of benefits, titanium is the best choice for surgical instruments and many kinds of medical components and implants. In fact, titanium implants can last for more than 20 years in the body without degrading. In addition, human bone material will actually bond to titanium to allow for healing and can literally integrate into the bone structure.
Thanks to titanium implants and medical components, these things are possible:
* Bone fusion
* Human joint replacement procedures
* Teeth implants
* Spinal fusion
* Toe and finger replacements
* High quality surgical tools which are resistant to bacteria