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Joint Loading & Musculoskeletal Analysis

The loads acting in joint prostheses and other orthopaedic implants is still partially unknown. The acting loads are required for different purposes.

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Knee joint replacement

Despite the unquestionable improvements and the success of total knee arthroplasty (TKA) over the last decades, a substantial number of patients remain unsatisfied with the outcome. Over 20% of patients report persisting knee pain without distinct radiological evidence or clinical rationale. It remains under debate if altered physiological knee kinematics developed after TKA are specifically responsible for this dissatisfaction. Additionally, the patients’ desire to return to activities of daily living and participation in sports make TKA implant optimization necessary.  By using analyzes and models, we want to help enabling patients to live a normal life.

In order to provide valuable information to surgeons and implant manufacturers about the postoperative performance of TKA implants, single plane fluoroscopy analysis is conducted during unloaded and loaded knee flexion activities. This technique accurately quantifies 3D knee joint kinematics and allows clear insight into the behavior of the analyzed implant. Gait analysis is also conducted to give an overview of the knee joint kinematics during daily activities (compare ‘Functional Adaptation’).

Moreover, the information collected from this analysis, when combined with specific in vivo load data and geometrical characteristics can be used as inputs for finite element (FE) analysis. This multi-pronged analysis allows for in-depth assessments of implant performance before implementation in the market.