How tibiofemoral alignment and contact locations affect predictions of medial and lateral tibiofemoral contact forces

Zachary F. Lerner, Matthew S. DeMers, Scott L. Delp, Raymond C. Browning

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

103 Scopus citations

Abstract

Understanding degeneration of biological and prosthetic knee joints requires knowledge of the in-vivo loading environment during activities of daily living. Musculoskeletal models can estimate medial/lateral tibiofemoral compartment contact forces, yet anthropometric differences between individuals make accurate predictions challenging. We developed a full-body OpenSim musculoskeletal model with a knee joint that incorporates subject-specific tibiofemoral alignment (i.e. knee varus-valgus) and geometry (i.e. contact locations). We tested the accuracy of our model and determined the importance of these subject-specific parameters by comparing estimated to measured medial and lateral contact forces during walking in an individual with an instrumented knee replacement and post-operative genu valgum (6°). The errors in the predictions of the first peak medial and lateral contact force were 12.4% and 11.9%, respectively, for a model with subject-specific tibiofemoral alignment and contact locations determined through radiographic analysis, vs. 63.1% and 42.0%, respectively, for a model with generic parameters. We found that each degree of tibiofemoral alignment deviation altered the first peak medial compartment contact force by 51N (r2=0.99), while each millimeter of medial-lateral translation of the compartment contact point locations altered the first peak medial compartment contact force by 41N (r2=0.99). The model, available at www.simtk.org/home/med-lat-knee/, enables the specification of subject-specific joint alignment and compartment contact locations to more accurately estimate medial and lateral tibiofemoral contact forces in individuals with non-neutral alignment.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)644-650
Number of pages7
JournalJournal of Biomechanics
Volume48
Issue number4
DOIs
StatePublished - Feb 26 2015
Externally publishedYes

Keywords

  • Joint loading
  • Musculoskeletal modeling
  • Osteoarthritis
  • Tibiofemoral contact force
  • Walking

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Biophysics
  • Biomedical Engineering
  • Orthopedics and Sports Medicine
  • Rehabilitation

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