In this small monograph on bone growth and bone building, the author plainly indicates his premises—namely, that bone growth, in the sense of the skeletal normal progressive growth from infancy on, is vegetative, biologic; whereas bone building, in the sense of repair for trauma, the building up of the adolescent bone or for pathologic conditions affecting the bone, is purely mechanical, dynamic.
Bone grows from the inherent growth energy of its bone matrix, which is vegetative. Bone building proceeding from the periosteal and chondral growing bones is more a matter of proliferation and absorption directed by requirements of physiologic activity. Bone is compared to a house. Formless and structureless bone matrix formed by osteoblasts is not a built bone—it is only the building material on which the mechanical work of the osteoblasts and osteoclasts eventually turns out the true bone architecture.
These ideas are applied to pathologic growth of bone,