What is “plasticosis”? Is it a ticking time bomb for human and animal health?

Did you know that in the early 1990s a human doctor was the first to suggest that micronizing plastic particles contribute to inflammation? The doctor used the term “plasticosis” to describe inflammation from degrading polyethylene implants in human patients.1

Large-scale manufacturing of petroleum-based plastics began in the 1950s. Fast-forward almost 70 years, and scientists are in the early stages of understanding how plastic particles on the micro- and nano-sized scales are impacting humans, animals, and our planet.

To learn more about what scientists have learned and what “plasticosis” means, click on the link below to view a talk given by Dr. Branson W. Ritchie, director of Technology Development and Implementation for the UGA New Materials Institute, to the International Ornithologists’ Union for their IOU Webinar Series in fall 2022.


1Campbell PA, Chun G, Kossovsky N, Amstutz HC. Histological Analysis of Tissues Suggest that “Metallosis” may really be “Plasticosis”. Transactions of the 38th Annual Meeting of the Orthopaedic Research Society. Washington, D.C. 1992. Vol. 17. Section 2.