Cases with loss of articular cartilage or lowering of articular lubricant performance are frequent among patients afflicted by various gonarthropathies or those fitted with prosthetic joints. The management of such cases has necessitated evaluation studies on the clinical efficacy of using high molecular weight hyaluronic acid as an artificial synovial fluid with a view to improving articular lubricant performance. The proper implementation of such evaluation studies on lubrication performance requires testing methods capable of assessing basic lubricant performance not ouly with respect to articular cartilage alone but also with respect to various other combinations of materials, i.e., lubrication between articular bone and artificial joints, etc. In the present study, first, a simple standard lubricant performance test using several small readily procurable test specimens was devised. Then, this test was employed to evaluate the basic lubricant properties of hyaluronic acidintended for use as artificial synovial fluid.
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