Towards Biodegradable Wireless Implants

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A new generation of partially or even fully biodegradable implants is emerging. The idea of using temporary devices is to avoid a second surgery to remove the implant after its period of use, thereby improving considerably the patient's comfort and safety. This paper provides a state-of-the-art overview and an experimental section that describes the key technological challenges for making biodegradable devices. The general considerations for the design and synthesis of biodegradable components are illustrated with radio frequency-driven resistor–inductor–capacitor (RLC) resonators made of biodegradable metals (Mg, Mg alloy, Fe, Fe alloys) and biodegradable conductive polymer composites (polycaprolactone–polypyrrole, polylactide–polypyrrole). Two concepts for partially/fully biodegradable wireless implants are discussed, the ultimate goal being to obtain a fully biodegradable sensor for in vivo sensing.


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Philosophical Transactions of the Royal Society A