Biomechanical properties of bone treated by magnetic resonance-guided focused ultrasound - an in vivo porcine model study

Amir Herman, Eran Avivi, Tamar Brosh, Ignat Schwartz, Boaz Liberman

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

11 Scopus citations


The magnetic resonance-guided focused ultrasound (MRgFUS) system uses MR imaging for real-time aiming of thermal ablation of bone and soft tissue tumors. Past clinical studies showed no increase in fracture rate after MRgFUS treatment. The purpose of this study was to determine the effect of MRgFUS treatment on mechanical properties of bone and correlate the effect to histological findings of treated bone. Four fully grown mini-pigs were treated by MRgFUS. Six consecutive right normal ribs were treated in each animal, and the left corresponding ribs served as controls. The animals were sacrificed at pre-set intervals (0, 2, 6 and 12weeks after treatment), and the treated and control bones were extracted. Mechanical properties of each bone were examined using three points bending studies for comparing treated bones to the corresponding controls. Histologic properties using Masson and hematoxylin-eosin stains were also compared. The ratio between treated and control biomechanical properties showed reduction in bone biomechanical properties at 6weeks post-MRgFUS treatment. The mean±SD yield load ratio and maximum ratios were 0.69±0.11 and 0.71±0.13, respectively (both p=0.031). These findings showed some recovery trend at 12weeks after treatment. Histological analysis showed a reduction in mean osteon size at 2weeks after treatment (0.58×10-3±0.1×10-3mm and 0.16×10-3±0.017×10-3mm) in control vs. treated bones, respectively (p=0.005). Treatment with the MRgFUS system resulted in a ~30% reduction in mechanical strength at 6weeks post-treatment. The reduction showed a reversible trend, with a 25%-20% decrease in strength at 12weeks post-treatment. •MRgFUS causes a transient decrease in bone strength with nadir at 6weeks and recovery by 3months post-treatment.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)92-97
Number of pages6
Issue number1
StatePublished - 1 Nov 2013
Externally publishedYes


  • Biomechanics
  • Bone mechanical properties
  • MRgFUS

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Endocrinology, Diabetes and Metabolism
  • Histology
  • Physiology


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