Distraction osteogenesis is widely applied to correct oral and maxillofacial deformities, and intermittent distraction protocols have been used in various clinical applications. There are many challenges for continuous distraction of the jaw bone such as when using hydraulic motors and motor-driven plates. The size of the motor is critical to the ability to miniaturize the complete distractor system, and the importance of size makes it difficult to extrapolate the results of animal models to the clinical situation. This study developed a microactuator-generated distractor (MAGD) for continuous jaw bone distraction. The MAGD system consists of control software based on Microsoft Windows and a Squiggle piezoelectric motor. The system allows various intermittent and continuous distraction protocols to be simply selected using the control software. The maximum force of the laboratory-scale MAGD is 3 N, and the device is ready for adoption in small-animal distraction models such as the rat and mouse. The MAGD needs further refinement before it can be applied to humans, but a fully implanted MAGD system will reduce soft-tissue complications resulting from exposure of the extraoral component. Moreover, the MAGD will support the patient's social activities and require only minimal cooperation from the patient.
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