The study of antibiotic drug-loaded polymer films for the prevention of the infection of external fixation devices

Moon Kyu Lee, Changyang Lee, Dong Ryul Kim, Ik Chan Kwon, Kuiwon Choi

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

1 Citation (Scopus)


The purpose of the present study was to develop a polymer film loaded with drug to effectively prevent pin tract infection. It was found that the polymer, poly ethylene-co-vinyl acetate blended with tetrahydrofuran, showed better flexibility and deformability than the other polymers: poly caprolactone 18 and poly caprolactone44. Polymer films, poly ethylene-co-vinyl acetate, were divided into five testing groups dependent on the loading concentration of rifampici (5, 10, 15, and 20 wt %). The surface morphology of polymer films was examined by a scanning electron microscopy. It was found that the concentration of drug was a main factor to determine the roughness of the film. Considering the roughness of polymer films, 5 wt % of rifampicin might be the maximum concentration for further applications. Hence, the antibiotic drug-loaded polymer films were manufactured by mixing poly(ethylene-co-vinylacetate) and tetrahydrofuran with rifampicin(antibiotic drug). The film cast was designed as a shape of disk (inner Ø5mm and outer Ø20mm) to be suitable for pins for external fixation in orhtopaedics. The drug-loaded polymer solvent, the amount of 0.6cc, was molded into the disk-shaped film and dried into a airtight box at 15°C for 24 hrs. The drug release characteristics(1, 2, 3, 4 and 5 wt%) were examined as a function of soaking time in phosphate buffered saline (PBS, 10 ml) using an enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay. Rifampicin was linearly released for first 100 hrs(∼4 days) for all antibiotic drug-loaded polymer films. Afterward, the drug was released at a slower pace as a function of square root of time until 1000 hrs (∼40 days). This slow drug release can be explained by their hydrophobic characteristics of poly ethylene-co-vinyl acetate and rifampicin. The antibiotic drug-loaded polymer film can be intrinsically able to prevent the bacteria adhesion by wrapping the pin track area, and perform active and effective infection-resistant by a sustained antibiotic-release.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)533-536
Number of pages4
JournalKey Engineering Materials
Publication statusPublished - 2007


  • Anti-biotic drug-loaded polymer films
  • Drug delivery system
  • External fixation

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Materials Science(all)
  • Mechanics of Materials
  • Mechanical Engineering


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