Orthopaedic Biomechanics by Harold M Frost

By Harold M Frost

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By Harold M Frost

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6 Stress–strain curves for high- and low-density specimens of trabecular bone loaded in uniaxial compression along the primary direction. Some of the basic material properties are indicated on the figure. 121,122 These variations in density and architecture can then lead to heterogeneity in the apparent-level elastic and strength properties of trabecular bone. 123–126 These dependencies are typically described using linear or power-law relationships. 7). That these exponents are greater than 1 suggests that small decreases in density that occur in the course of the normal aging process have severe consequences for the load-bearing capacity of trabecular bone.

26 Orthopaedic Biomechanics In doing so, this combined approach has provided a direct bridge between the mechanistic approach of cellular-solid modeling and the anatomic fidelity of micro-FE analysis. Micro-FE modeling has also made substantial contributions in estimating the distributions of stress and strain within trabecular tissue in response to loads applied at the apparent level or applied to the whole bone. 183,213 The implications of this spatial heterogeneity in the local mechanical environment of trabecular tissue for microdamage accumulation,160,168 bone adaptation,214,215 and bone failure170,171 have been active areas of recent research.

211 used micro-FE analysis to estimate all nine orthotropic elastic constants of specimens of trabecular bone from multiple anatomic sites and used these data to determine that the fabric–elasticity relationships proposed earlier by Cowin33 could account for 97% of the variance in the elastic constants. These results confirmed the primary role of both volume fraction and architectural anisotropy in determining apparent elastic properties. 148,188 Combination of the micro-FE approach with digital topological analysis,212 a method of classifying the individual trabeculae within a specimen as rods or plates and of quantifying the orientation of each trabecula, has enabled the study of the way in which trabecular architecture modulates loading paths in trabecular bone.

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