IIT-BHU-invents Nickel-free surgical-grade SS

13 July 2021

Millions of people visit the hospitals every day with fractures and broken bones due to road accidents and other reasons. If you think that the metal used to attach and support the bone will not cause discomfort after the operation, then you are wrong. 

Currently, titanium, cobalt-chromium, and nickel-based surgical grade stainless steel metals such as (316L) are being used in organ transplants. In this, products made of titanium and cobalt-chromium are extremely expensive and many types of problems are also associated with it. Stainless steel (316L) is a nickel-based metal that is cheap but the ‘nickel’ element present in it causes problems like allergies, cancer, inflammation, discomfort, changes in the skin of the implant area in human skin.

The scientists at the Department of Metallurgical Engineering of the Indian Institute of Technology (Banaras Hindu University) have succeeded in making nickel-free surgical grade stainless steel. This metal is cheaper and much safer than stainless steel containing titanium, cobalt-chromium, and ‘nickel’ metals.

Dr Girija Shankar Mahobia, associate professor of Metallurgical Engineering, said that the common side effects of the ‘Nickel’ element are fatigue, swelling, and skin allergy. In some circumstances, there may also be a risk of developing lung, heart, and kidney disease. Nickel also starts coming out along with various elements. Its dissolving capacity can be as high as 20 milligrams per kilogram, which is very dangerous. Keeping all these things in mind, it became necessary to invent such cheap and effective metal in which ‘nickel’ is negligible and it does not have any side effects on the body.