Mission and History

Mission Statement

The mission of the Center for the Evaluation of Implant Performance is to pursue engineering, scientific, and economic analyses of joint replacement procedures, to evaluate the performance of implant devices during patient use, and to assess the medical and economic outcomes of joint reconstruction and related patient care.  This mission is achieved in part through IRB-approved collection, maintenance, and protection of clinical and radiographic information and total joint replacement components obtained at revision or removal surgery. The primary goals are to advance the science of joint replacement surgery by improving the performance and durability of joint replacement devices through advances in implant materials and design and to innovate improvements in patient care processes that result in improved patient outcomes. To this end, the Center for the Evaluation of Implant Performance works in close partnership and collaboration with the Center for Joint Replacement and Preservation at University Hospitals Cleveland Medical Center.

Background and History

The orthopaedic implant performance and retrieval program was initiated in 1996 with the arrival of Dr. Clare M. Rimnac to Case Western Reserve University.  At that time, in collaboration with Dr. Matthew Kraay and Dr. Victor Goldberg, the Orthopaedic Implant Retrieval and Analysis Laboratory, a joint effort of the Departments of Orthopaedics and Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering at CWRU was created.   Dr. Rimnac also oversees related fundamental implant materials characterization studies in laboratory facilities in the Department of Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering at CWRU dedicated to orthopaedic biomechanics and biofabrication/biomanufacturing.  In 2012, in keeping with the expansion of its programmatic efforts, the Center for the Evaluation of Implant Performance, was established under the co-direction of Dr. Clare Rimnac (Case School of Engineering) and Dr. Matthew Kraay (Case School of Medicine and University Hospitals Cleveland Medical Center).

From 2000-2016, in partnership with Dr. Steve Kurtz at Drexel University, the program was part of a multicenter implant retrieval program, funded by the NIH.  This successful program grew to more than a dozen participating sites. The architecture of this scalable, multicenter orthopaedic implant retrieval program was unique and provided an unmatched ability to comprehensively integrate and assess the material, design, and clinical factors that affect implant performance. 

Taken together, over more than two decades, on our own and in collaboration with our multi-center partners, the Center for the Evaluation of Implant Performance at CWRU has contributed and continues to contribute numerous publications and presentations to the orthopaedic community on topics related to implant performance.