The aim of the present study was to investigate the biomechanical behaviors of the pre-shaped titanium (PS-Ti) cranial mesh implants with different pore structures and thicknesses as well as the surface characteristics of the three-dimensional printed Ti (3DP-Ti) cranial mesh implant. The biomechanical behaviors of the PS-Ti cranial mesh implants with different pore structures (square, circular and triangular) and thicknesses (0.2, 0.6 and 1 mm) were simulated using finite element analysis. Surface properties of the 3DP-Ti cranial mesh implant were performed by means of scanning electron microscopy, X-ray diffraction and static contact angle goniometer. It was found that the stress distribution and peak Von Mises stress of the PS-Ti cranial mesh implants significantly decreased at the thickness of 1 mm. The PS-Ti mesh implant with the circular pore structure created a relatively lower Von Mises stress on the bone defect area as compared to the PS-Ti mesh implant with the triangular pore structure and square pore structure. Moreover, the spherical-like Ti particle structures were formed on the surface of the 3DP-Ti cranial mesh implant. The microstructure of the 3DP-Ti mesh implant was composed of α and rutile-TiO2 phases. For wettability evaluation, the 3DP-Ti cranial mesh implant possessed a good hydrophilicity surface. Therefore, the 3DP-Ti cranial mesh implant with the thickness of 1 mm and circular pore structure is a promising biomaterial for cranioplasty surgery applications.
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