Background: Previously, we have described novel, thermally deployable tissue fixators based on the shape-memory properties of nickel titanium. The present study reports on the in vivo wound closure with these fixators as a preliminary to evaluating their use for bowel anastomoses. Methods: Twenty adult Sprague-Dawley rats had 2.0-cm dorsal skin incisions approximated either with shape-memory alloy (SMA) fixators or conventional skin staples on a random basis. Electrical resistance heating was used to transform and deploy the SMA fixators into the wound. The rats were killed on day 14 or day 28 and wound specimens were harvested for force distraction studies and histologic examination. Results: There was no incidence of wound dehiscence. 14- and 28-day wounds from both groups showed no significant difference in breaking force or energy. Histology revealed appropriate stages of wound healing for both SMA-closed and control wounds. Conclusions: The results confirm the efficacy and safety of tissue-edge approximation with SMA fixators. © Springer Science+Business Media, Inc. 2005.
- In vivo skin closure
- NiTi shape-memory alloy (SMA) fixators
- Wound closure