Biomechanical assessment of vertebrae with lytic metastases with subject-specific finite element models

The assessment of risk of vertebral fracture in patients with lytic metastases is challenging, due to the complexity in understanding their impact on the vertebral strength. Currently surgeons have to decide whether to fix the spine with implants or not, just based on their experience and on qualitative scoring systems such as the Spinal Instability Neoplastic Score (SINS). However, there are cases in which clear guidelines are not available. In our lab, we have developed computational models to predict how critical is the lesion in the vertebra and to help the surgeon in assessing the strength of the bone from a computed tomography image of the patient. In this study we have demonstrated the potential of this new approach and in the future we will use it to better classify patients that need treatment.

Costa, M. C., Eltes, P., Lazary, A., Varga, P. P., Viceconti, M., Dall’Ara, E. (2019), “Biomechanical assessment of vertebrae with lytic metastases with subject-specific finite element models”, Journal of the Mechanical Behavior of Biomedical Materials, 98, pp 268-290.

URL: https://doi.org/10.1016/j.jmbbm.2019.06.027